Fighters from the Ukrainian Special Operations Forces (SSO) posted a video on Telegram showing them engaging and destroying Russian observation posts and eliminating five Russian soldiers in the southern sector of the front line.

According to the post, operators from the 73rd Maritime Center of the SSO were conducting special reconnaissance in the southern direction when they encountered manned Russian observation posts.

“The UAV complex crew destroyed the targets by dropping munitions from a drone equipped with a thermal imager,” the message accompanying the video read.

A Ukrainian aerial intelligence officer, interviewed by Kyiv Post, suggests that the fighters used a Mavic 3T drone, that probably dropped F-1 hand grenades on the Russian positions.

The post reads: "To destroy the enemy, the crew inflicted fire damage on the targets using a thermal imaging drone with a reset system. After that, a combat group of the SSO advanced to clear the observation posts.

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"Despite the dense enemy artillery fire, the operators approached the enemy at close range, took advantageous positions and started direct actions."

As a result, the SSO fighters claim they successfully destroyed the enemy observation posts, and killed the five Russian servicemen manning them.

“In the future, this will allow us to control more areas in this direction,” the SSO team reported.

Kyiv Post could not independently verify when or where the footage was taken.

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A training unit with the mission of producing combat divers and soldiers, with a mission similar to that of the US Navy SEALS, Ukraine’s 73rd Naval Center of Special Operations has morphed over the course of the war to a small boat, amphibious raiding unit often operating behind Russian lines in the Dnipro River delta.

A highly-secretive unit the 73rd has, perhaps inevitably because of its commando reputation, become a favorite subject of Ukrainian military media, typically portrayed as masked frogmen carrying assault rifles. They are widely reported to have trained for years, prior to the war, with NATO special operations units from the US, Poland and Lithuania among others.

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Previously, the Ukrainian military destroyed a Russian Osa (wasp; NATO reporting name SA-8 Gecko) anti-aircraft missile complex in southern Ukraine, using an American-made HIMARS rocket launcher - according to a report by Ukrainian Special Ops.

While conducting reconnaissance in the southern sector, a crew from the unmanned aircraft complex of the 73rd Maritime Center of the SSO, despite poor visibility, discovered an anti-aircraft missile system that the Russians had used against Ukrainian troops. The SSO aerial reconnaissance operators sent its coordinates to HIMARS operators.

The footage, released via Telegram, shows that the Russian anti-aircraft missile complex was completely destroyed and caught fire. Kyiv Post analysts confirmed the video showed the destruction of an Osa.

Earlier in January, the Ukrainian military destroyed a TOS-1A Solntsepyok (Blazing Sun) – a Russian heavy flamethrower – in southern Ukraine, which a team of the SSO drone operators had discovered hidden in a forested area. Reports suggest that the value of the system lies in the range of $6.5 million to $15 million.

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