Russia has lost another military leader.
The Russian governor of Sevastopol has announced that Black Sea Fleet deputy commander Captain Andrey Paliy, 51, died in combat near Mariupol.
The Russian naval chief grew up in Kiyv, Soviet Ukraine. He is the first maritime commander to have perished in Ukraine, although five Russian Army generals have died in the invasion.
Ukrainian forces reportedly shot Paliy dead outside of Mariupol, around the same time Ukraine rejected Russia’s ultimatum to surrender the strategic port city.
According to reports, Paliy had expected to be promoted to rear admiral.
The Daily Mail reports on the latest blow to Vladimir Putin’s stalled invasion:
Paliy was born in Kyiv and in 1993 refused to take the Ukrainian military oath, instead serving in the Russian Northern Fleet.
He had earlier served on the Russian nuclear missile cruiser ‘Peter the Great’.
He also served as deputy head of the Russian naval academy in Sevastopol, in annexed Crimea.
Meanwhile, Russia says it has fired more hypersonic Kinzhal missiles in Ukraine, hours after their first use in combat in a dangerous escalation by the Kremlin.
The missiles reportedly destroyed a Ukrainian fuel storage facility in the north of the country.