A group of 13 Ukrainian border guards were killed after telling a Russian warship “go f–k yourself” in response to Russian troops demanding their surrender. Audio of the exchange before its deadly end went viral this week.
The border guards were stationed on Snake Island in the Black Sea south of Odessa when the Russian warship threatened to attack if the guards refused to surrender.
“This is Russian warship. I repeat. I suggest you surrender your weapons and capitulate. Otherwise, I will open fire. Do you copy?” the Russian troops said over a radio.
“This is it,” a Ukrainian border guard says quietly to another guard.
“Should I tell him to go f—k himself? Just in case,” he continues.
After a moment, the Ukrainian border guard turns up the volume on radio and responds, “Russian warship, go f—k yourself.”
All 13 guards were killed while standing their ground in the face of a Russian attack.
Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelenskyy said in a speech following the attack that all of the border guards who were killed defending the country will be honored with the title of the Hero of Ukraine.
“Defending the Zmiinyi island, all our border guards died a heroic death. But they have not surrendered. They will all be awarded posthumously the title of the Hero of Ukraine,” Zelenskyy said. “Let those who gave their lives for Ukraine be remembered forever.”
On Friday, Zelenskyy said 137 civilians and military personnel have been killed in the conflict so far.
“They’re killing people and turning peaceful cities into military targets. It’s foul and will never be forgiven,” Zelenskyy said.
Zelenskyy said the Ukrainian people were “brilliantly defending the country against one of the most powerful nations in the world.”
The Ukrainian leader also noted that his country has been “left alone” in the fight against Russia.
“Who is ready to fight alongside us?” he asked. “I don’t see anyone.”
While Ukraine officials express fear that they will not receive military support from allied nations, ordinary Ukrainian citizens are taking up arms to defend their nation.
According to The Kyiv Independent reporter Illia Ponomarenko, as of Friday afternoon in Ukraine, as many as 18,000 rifles have been handed out to civilian forces.
Shortly after Russia first declared war on Ukraine, Zelenskyy announced that he would arm “anyone who wants to defend the country.”
“We will give weapons to anyone who wants to defend the country,” Zelenskyy tweeted. “Be ready to support Ukraine in the squares of our cities.”