Ukraine has accused the Russian military of using phosphorus bombs to attack Snake Island in the Black Sea. Moscow troops “carried out air strikes with phosphor bombs twice on Friday evening,” Ukrainian army chief Valeriy Zalushny wrote on Telegram. The Russian attacks took place around 6 p.m. local time, Saluschny wrote. The phosphorus bombs were dropped by the SU-30 aircraft of the Russian army.
Only on Thursday did the Russian army announce its withdrawal from the Ukrainian island, which it had previously occupied for four months. Russia describes its withdrawal from strategically important Snake Island as a “goodwill gesture”, while Ukraine speaks of a significant military victory for its troops.
Island strategically important
Snake Island is considered a strategically important post for monitoring sea routes in the northwestern part of the Black Sea. Russia had attempted to install missiles and air defense systems on the island.
According to British military intelligence, Russian forces withdrew probably because the garrison was isolated and increasingly vulnerable to Ukrainian attacks. Ukraine repeatedly fired drones and missiles at the armed forces on the island off the coast of Odessa and also attacked the supply lines.
Symbol of the Ukrainian Resistance
Since the beginning of the Russian war of aggression, Snake Island has been a symbol of the Ukrainian resistance. On the first day of the invasion, the crew of the later sunken Russian warship “Moskva” had asked Ukrainian border guards stationed on the island to surrender.
“Russian warship, f*** you!”, a border guard responded over the radio. A short time later, the Russian army took the island. The Ukrainian soldiers were captured and later released in a prisoner exchange.