A Ukrainian soldier has reportedly blown himself up to slow down the Russian forces invading from Crimea.

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Russian tanks were advancing towards the Henichesk bridge, a strategic point between Russian-occupied Crimea and Ukraine. Vitaly Skakun, an engineer, was part of the battalion defending the area, and went to rig the bridge with mines to halt the advance.

However, the opposing forces were coming too quickly, and Vitaly didn’t have time to leave and detonate the explosives remotely, so he made the decision to blow the bridge up while he was still there.

“According to his brothers in arms, Vitaly got in touch and said he was going to blow up the bridge,” the General Staff of the Armed Forces said. “Immediately after an explosion rang out.”

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The detonation reportedly gave other members of the Ukrainian military in the area time to regroup as the tanks had to take a significantly longer path to get to the mainland without the bridge.

Vitaly’s sacrifice is already being held up as one of several early examples of Ukrainian heroism in the face of unjust invasion from Vladimir Putin’s forces.

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Unfortunately, it will not be the last.

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*First Published: February 25, 2022, 10:04 am