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Defiant Ukrainian soldiers who told Russia, 'Go f*** yourself,' and refused to surrender may still be alive

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Photo by SERGEY BOBOK/AFP via Getty Images

The brave Ukrainian soldiers who told invading Russian forces to "go f*** yourself" may still be alive, according to a report from the Jerusalem Post.

The group of 13 soldiers made headlines last week after refusing to surrender to a Russian warship as it stormed 42-acre Snake Island.

What are the details?

Ukraine's navy on Monday announced that the soldiers on Snake Island — who were initially believed to have died during the violent Russian incursion — may well be alive and in Russian custody.

Initial reports of the incident indicated that the band of soldiers sacrificed themselves after keeping at bay two Russian warships for a period of several hours.

The report from the Jerusalem Post noted, however, that the navy announced the soldiers may not have been killed during the attack.

“We [have a] strong belief that all Ukrainian defenders of Zmiinyi (Snake) Island may be alive,” the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine said in Saturday statement. “Preliminary information that border guards may be dead came before the defenders lost contact.”

The New York Post added that Russian media reported that the soldiers "had been captured after they laid down their arms and were transported to Sevastopol on the Russian-controlled Crimea Peninsula."

The State Border Guard Service added that the information had not been confirmed.

A roughly translated Facebook post from the Naval Forces Commandments Armed Forces of Ukraine also said:

Regarding the actions of the Russian Federation near the island of Zmí їnij February 26th, receiving the information that on the o [sic]. A snake among our defenders may be killed and wounded, a Sapphire civilian ship was sent to the island to carry out a humanitarian mission to help the victims. Together with the crew agreed to leave father Vasily Virozub, Alexander Chokov and their assistants. But they were illegally captured by the Russians. Illegal capture of a civilian ship - a non-combatant without performing any military mission, is a violation of the rules and customs of war, international humanitarian law.

We demand from Russia the immediate release of illegally occupied citizens of Ukraine. We address the world community, to the believers of all churches requesting to take all possible measures to influence the Russian Federation for the return of our citizens. Regarding the Marines and border guards, who were taken captive by Russian occupiers on the island of Snake.

We are very happy to learn that our brothers are alive and well with them! But Russian propaganda tries to twist the "news" about the fact that the Ukrainian authorities "forgotten", "buried" their fellows.

At the same time, the sailors bravely rebuked twice the attacks of the Russian invaders. Because of BC's marriage, they could not continue the protection of the island. In turn, the invaders "forgot" to report that they had completely destroyed the island's infrastructure: lighthouse, carnations, antennas, etc. Accordingly, the connection with the snake was interrupted. Repeated attempts to contact the personal team and learn about its fate were futile. And the permanent shelling on the side of warships and aviation of the Russian Federation did not allow to help the Marines.

In summary, we want to add, the enemy once demonstrated his essence. He proved again that there is no faith and truth in his actions and words.
And we are looking forward to our brothers and with all our soul.

What else?

Previous reporting stated that the soldiers' message went viral — and audio footage captured the moment Ukrainian soldiers told the Russian warship where to go.

"This is a Russian military ship," a portion of the communication said. "I suggest you lay down your weapons and surrender to avoid bloodshed and unnecessary victims. Otherwise we will open fire on you."

One of the soldiers took to the radio and responded, "Russian warship, go f*** yourself!"

Russian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the time said that all 13 soldiers died as a result of the incursion, "but did not surrender."

"All of them will be named Heroes of Ukraine," he said. "May the memory of those who gave their lives for Ukraine live forever," said Zelenskyy.

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