Pro-Russian Fighters Defend Bombed-Out Donetsk Airport

Ordinary people who have joined the ranks of the pro-Russian forces are seen on video defending the bombed-out Donetsk Airport in the disputed Donetsk Oblast, a region in eastern Ukraine adjacent to Russia.

The region is internationally recognized as Ukrainian but is administered by pro-Russian separatists.

The People's Militia (NM) of the so-called Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) said former teachers and miners now don uniforms and carry out patrols of the city airport, located in a strategically important area of Donetsk.

pMobilized military personnel of the Peoples Militia of the DPR hold the defense at the airport of Donetsk.  (Press Service of the UNM DPR/Zenger)/p
Mobilized military ersonnel of the Peoles Militia of the DPR hold the defense at the airort of Donetsk.  (Press Service of the UNM DPR/Zenger)

The militia said Tuesday: "Mobilized servicemen of the People's Militia of the DPR hold the defense at Donetsk Airport.

"Mobilized servicemen of the People's Militia of the DPR defend one of the most important sectors of the defense of the capital of the Donetsk People's Republic. Yesterday's miners, teachers and other workers of peaceful professions are adequately coping with this significant task."

Following the 2014 "Revolution of Dignity" in Ukraine, the First Battle of Donetsk Airport took place May 26 and 27 between the DPR and Ukrainian government forces.

After a Ukrainian victory, the DPR retook the airport during the Second Battle of Donetsk Airport between September 28, 2014, and January 21, 2015.

Russian troops invaded Ukraine on February 24 in what the Kremlin is still calling a "special military operation." June 7 marks 104 days since the first day of the invasion.

Zenger News contacted Russian and Ukrainian officials for comment but had not received a reply at the time of writing.

From February 24 to June 7, the total combat losses of Russian troops stand at around 31,360 personnel, according to the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The Ukrainian military also claims that Russia has lost 1,390 tanks, 3,416 armored fighting vehicles, 694 artillery systems, 207 multiple launch rocket systems, 96 anti-aircraft warfare systems, 212 aircraft, 177 helicopters, 2,405 motor vehicles and fuel tanks, 13 naval vessels, 553 unmanned aerial vehicles, 53 special equipment units, and 125 cruise missiles.

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian Center for Strategic Communications (StratCom) said Monday that Russian Major General Roman Kutuzov was killed in a battle near Popasna in the Luhansk region. This has now been confirmed by Russian state media.

The United Kingdom and the United States have announced that they are sending long-range missile systems to Ukraine.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned of more attacks in Ukraine if the West sends long-range weapons.

Russian missiles struck Kyiv on Sunday in the first assault on the Ukrainian capital in weeks.

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky has said that Russian attacks on the cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk has turned them into "dead cities," but he added that Ukrainian forces could still hold Severodonetsk despite being outnumbered.

Russia's ambassador to the United Nations walked out of a Security Council meeting on Monday after European Council president Charles Michel blamed Russia for triggering a global food crisis.

This story was provided to Newsweek by Zenger News.