Ukraine Launches Historic Attack

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Ukraine has sent its first troops inside Crimea, conducting a raid before coming home.

During the raid, Ukrainian operators raised the national flag before taking it down and returning to base. The Guardian reports:

Ukrainian troops landed on the western tip of Crimea, near the village of Olenivka, in the early hours of Thursday, defence intelligence said in a statement. They fought Russian troops and raised a Ukrainian flag, before all returned safely home.

It was the first time Ukrainian forces are known to have landed in Crimea since Putin ordered his forces over the border last year. They had to evade Russian defences on a long journey across the Black Sea, and then escape again after a skirmish.

Ukraine lost Crimea in 2014, when a combination of local militia and Russian troops seized it. While Ukraine was not in a position to fight back then, it can now conduct amphibious raids. Al Jazeera continues:

The reports come a day after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy vowed to end Russia’s occupation of Crimea.

During a speech at an international conference on Crimea in Kyiv, Zelenskyy said Crimea will be “de-occupied like all other parts of Ukraine that are unfortunately still under the occupier”.

Because Crimea is legally part of Russia in his eyes, Putin could be willing to use more weapons in his arsenal. Ukraine’s counteroffensive is nowhere near Crimea but it is its ultimate goal.

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