UA forces attacked the Snake Island occupied by Russia, gradual deoccupation of Kherson Oblast: last night's highlights
22 June, 2022

UA forces attacked the Snake Island occupied by Russia, destroying the Russian Pantsir anti-aircraft missile system and other equipment, Ukraine is strengthening positions in Luhansk Oblast, where the fiercest fighting continues, and liberates Kherson Oblast. Here is what you may have missed from the previous night.

Ukrainian forces attacked the Snake Island occupied by Russia on June 21, causing significant losses to the Russian garrison, particularly targeting the Russian Pantsir anti-aircraft missile system, a radar station, and armored vehicles. The final results of this operation are to be disclosed later, reported Operational Command South.

In total, the Russian forces lost another 49 personnel in southern Ukraine during the day, 2 Msta-C self-propelled howitzers, one tractor, one electronic warfare station, one ammunition depot, and 5 armored vehicles.

Ukrainian Defence Forces are strengthening their positions in Luhansk Oblast, where the fiercest fighting continues, conducting tactical movements, and are gradually liberating Kherson Oblast, said President Zelensky.

In the coming days, the Russian offensive may threaten Lysychansk as far as Russian forces successfully advance toward Lysychansk from the south rather than making an opposed river crossing from Severodonetsk, says the Institute for the Study of War (ISW). Analysts also said Russia wants to negate the defensive advantage that the Siverskyi Donets River would grant Ukrainian defenders opposing a direct assault from Sievierodonetsk.

Russian forces are trying to surround the Ukrainian forces along the Lysychansk-Bakhmut highwaysays Head of Luhansk Regional Military Administration Serhiy Haidai. Ukraine manages to hold back the Russian troops near Lysychansk, but they are heavily shelling the city. However, the Russians cannot enter the city or cut it off.

Two US volunteers who fought for Ukraine and were captured by Russia could be executed, said Putin's spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, adding that he "can't guarantee anything. It depends on the investigation."

The official said stated that the volunteers, Alexander Drueke, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, are not related to the Ukrainian army and therefore are not covered by the Geneva conventions and can face the death penalty. However, this is not true — all foreign volunteers who are fighting for Ukraine have signed a contract with the UA Armed Forces, so they are subject to the legal status of combatants. This status, among other things, gives them the right to be treated as prisoners of war in case of captivity.

John Kirby, National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications, commented on Peskov's statement saying, "It's appalling that a public official in Russia would even suggest the death penalty for American citizens ... in Ukraine."

Russian Su-25 attack aircraft crashed in Russia's Rostov Oblast on June 21, and the pilot died, reports Russian media. Russia's military leadership speaks of a possible technical malfunction.

A few days earlier, on June 17, another Su-25 plane crashed in Russia's Belgorod Oblast. Russia said that the plane crashed during a scheduled training flight due to a technical malfunction, and the pilot was able to eject.