US Soldiers Disappear in Ukraine; they fear they have been captured by Russia
Two members of the United States Army are listed as missing and the last time their whereabouts were known was near the Ukrainian city of Kharkov, and it is feared that they have been captured by Russian troopsas reported on Wednesday by relatives of US citizens.
Soldier Alexander Drueke, 39, and Marine Andy Tai Huynh, 27, both from Alabama, went missing near Kharkiv in the framework of clashes with Russian troops under the command of the Ukrainian 92 Brigadenear Izbytske, on June 9.
This was confirmed to the chain CNN a source speaking as a sergeant, on condition of anonymity for security reasons, who stated that Drueke and Huynh disappeared and that in subsequent search missions did not find any human remains.
“It was absolute chaos,” he told CNNby emphasizing that “there were more than a hundred infantrymen” advancing towards their positions. “We had a ‘T72’ shooting at people from 30-40 meters away,” he added.
In addition, in different telephone interviews, the families shared similar stories, since both told them the day before, on June 8, that they would not be available during a multi-day mission in Ukraineaccording to the newspaper ‘The Washington Post’.
Drueke’s mother, Lois, said she received a phone call from another US citizen who told her he was in Ukraine with her son. The person she called, whom she did not identify, told him that intercepted communications suggested Russian forces had detained two Americansaccording to the aforementioned newspaper.
The information on the possible capture of the two Americans was first published by the newspaper ‘The Telegraph‘, which stated that Drueke and Huynh would be the first “prisoners of war” and that they would join other Western servicemen “captured” by Russian forces, including three British citizens: Aiden Aslin, Shaun Pinner and Andrew Hill.
The State Department reported in a statement that they are “closely” monitoring the situation, so are in contact with the Ukrainian authorities. They also emphasized that US citizens “should not travel to Ukraine” due to the active armed conflict.
For his part, a spokesman for the US State Department said on Wednesday, according to the chain CNNthat “are aware of these reports” of the two soldiers missing or captured in Ukraine, although they did not confirm this information. (Europe Press)