The Russian army spoke of a "gesture of goodwill" when it announced its withdrawal from the Ukrainian island of Snakes on Thursday. But now Ukraine is reporting two airstrikes. Phosphorus bombs are said to have been dropped.
Ukraine has accused the Russian army of using phosphorus bombs to attack Snake Island in the Black Sea. Moscow's troops had "twice carried out an air raid with phosphorus bombs" on Friday evening, Ukrainian army chief Valeriy Zalushny wrote on Telegram. Only on Thursday did the Russian army announce its withdrawal from the Ukrainian island, which it had previously occupied for four months.
The Russian attacks took place around 6 p.m. local time, Saluschny wrote. Phosphorus bombs were dropped by the Russian army's SU-30 planes. In addition, the 48-year-old published a video recording that is intended to prove the bombing. "The only thing the opponent is consistent about is the unchanged 'accuracy'," he emphasized ironically, referring to the apparently inaccurate throws.
Snake Island is considered a strategically important post for monitoring sea routes in the north-western part of the Black Sea. Russia had tried to install missile and air defense systems on the island, but the Russian army withdrew from the island on Thursday. She spoke of a "gesture of good will", while Ukraine spoke of an important military victory for its troops.
Phosphorus weapons are not explicitly prohibited under international law; however, a 1980 arms convention outlaws their use against civilians and in urban areas. They can cause severe burns and poisoning.
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 sunk Russian warship "Moskva" had asked the Ukrainian border guards stationed on the island to surrender.
"Fuck you, Russian warship!" 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.