How Ukraine Recaptured Snake Island From Russia

Ukraine's army released a video on Thursday showing how its forces successfully recaptured Snake Island from Russia, shortly after Moscow said it withdrew its forces from the strategic Black Sea outpost as a "gesture of goodwill."

Moscow said on Thursday that its forces had "finished fulfilling their tasks" and "demonstrated that Russia is not blocking the UN's efforts to organise a humanitarian corridor to export agricultural goods from Ukraine."

Kyiv pushed back against Russia's statement, saying that it drove Russian President Vladimir Putin's troops from the island with military force in an overnight assault.

Ukraine's armed forces released a video showing an offensive on the island, which made headlines in the early days of the war when Ukrainians stationed there told a Russian cruiser: "Russian warship, go f**k yourself!"

"Unable to withstand the fire of Ukraine's artillery, missile and air strikes, Russian army left Snake Island," the commander-in-chief of the armed forces of Ukraine, Valery Zaluzhny, said.

Ukraine's army said the video showed a Ukrainian-developed Bohdana 155mm self-propelled howitzer destroying Russian targets on the island.

"I thank the defenders of Odesa, who took maximum measures to liberate a strategically important part of our territory. A low bow to the designers and manufacturers of the Ukrainian Bohdana self-propelled howitzer, which played an important role in the liberation of the island.

"Thanks to foreign partners for the provided means of destruction," Zaluzhny added.

The military video shows a montage of strikes on what Ukraine says were Russian positions on Snake Island.

Zaluzhny didn't specify the other weapons Ukraine's armed forces used to repel Russian troops in the attack.

"I thank everyone who helps defend every inch of Ukrainian land and believes in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Together we will win!" he added.

Snake Island is a strategic outpost located off the southern coast near the city of Odesa. Its recapture provides Ukraine with a key landmass close to important shipping lanes and other areas of the Black Sea, and will help improve the country's import-export capacities.

"KABOOM!" tweeted Andriy Yermak, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's chief of staff. "No Russian troops on the Snake Island anymore. Our Armed Forces did a great job."

"The most significant aspect is that this could open the door to Ukrainian grain exports from Odesa, which is critical for Ukraine's economy and for the global food supply," tweeted Rob Lee, a senior fellow at the U.S.-based Foreign Policy Research Institute.

Newsweek has contacted the foreign ministries of Ukraine and Russia for comment.

A Ukrainian serviceman
A Ukrainian serviceman gives a thumbs up riding atop a military vehicle before an attack in the Lugansk region on February 26, 2022. Ukraine’s army released a video on Thursday showing how its forces successfully recaptured Snake Island from Russia. ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP/Getty Images