Dmitry Medvedev, Deputy Chairman of Russia's Security Council, delivers a speech during a ceremony marking Shipbuilder's Day in Saint Petersburg, Russia June 29, 2022. Sputnik/Valentin Yegorshin/Pool via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.

The Russian military has announced its withdrawal from the fiercely contested Snake Island in the Black Sea. “Today, as a step of goodwill, the Russian military completed their duties on Snake Island and withdrew the garrison there,” the Russian Defense Ministry said. With this, Russia wants to show that it does not hinder the export of grain and agricultural products from Ukraine, said spokesman Igor Konashenkov. The withdrawal has now been confirmed by the Ukrainian side.

The Ukrainian army had previously announced that it had attacked the occupied island. A short-range air defense system of the type Pantsir-S1 was destroyed, said the South Command on Thursday night on Facebook.

After the Russian invasion at the end of February, the island not far from the Danube Delta was conquered by the Russian Navy on the second day of the war. Since then, Ukrainian forces have repeatedly launched attacks using combat drones and aircraft, and sank the cruiser Moskva (Moscow) with rockets. (tsp, dpa)