A Ukrainian soldier blew himself up in order to destroy a bridge and prevent Russian forces from storming in from Crimea, it has been reported.
Vitaliy Skakun Volodymyrovych died while attempting to fend off a row of Russian tanks at the Henichesk bridge, in the Kherson region.
Ukraine ’s armed forces confirmed the death of the trooper near the bridge – which connects Russian-occupied Crimea with mainland Ukraine – after he had carried out the dangerous task of mining it with explosives.
An Armed Forces official said Mr Volodymyrovych had decided to blow up the bridge after volunteering to place the explosives on it.
“The bridge was mined, but he didn’t manage to get away from there,” they explained.
“According to his brothers in arms, Vitaliy got in touch [with them] and said he was going to blow up the bridge. Immediately after an explosion rang out.”
Mr Volodymyrovych, a military engineer, was now being hailed by his fellow soldiers for “significantly slowing down the advancement of the enemy”.
His move had allowed Ukrainian military units to regroup and redeploy its defences.
And commanders were now working to award him with posthumous honours for his actions.
News of the soldier’s death comes as a story of defiance in the face of terror, as the Kremlin’s forces move in on Ukrainian capital Kyiv.
Ukrainian citizens are reportedly handed guns and told to make Molotov cocktails in an attempt to push back against Putin’s army.