Ukrainian boxing champion gunned down by Russians while fighting in Bakhmut

A member of the Ukrainian national boxing team has been killed fighting Bakhmut.

Top boxer Oleksandr Onyshchenko, 30, died for his country fighting off Russian invaders in the bloodiest battle of the war so far.

The Ukrainian Boxing Federation said in a statement: "Oleksandr died near Bakhmut defending the Ukrainian homeland from the Russian enemy,” although beyond this no details have been shared.

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It has also offered its “sincerest condolences to the family” and added: "Eternal memory for all those who gave their lives for the freedom and independence of our country.”

Oleksandr’s funeral was held in the Sumy region and was attended by his comrades and was shown live on TV, including clips of him in a victorious fight as a young boxer.

Coach Dmytro Dubrov said: "He was one of my best students.

“He was like a son to me. I coached him since he was nine years old.

“We went through a very difficult boxing path, he achieved a lot.

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“He was one of the best boxers in Sumy region and a two-time champion of Ukraine among young men.”

Mourner Halyna Sydorenko said: "My son was friends with him.

“He was a good person, cheerful, always smiling. It's a great grief.

“He volunteered. He signed up, passed the commission and left.”

Reports claim that around 262 Ukrainian athletes have lost their lives fighting against Russia since the start of Vladimir Putin’s “special operation in” February 2022.

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Bakhmut is now understood to have finally been captured by Russia-affiliated forces.

Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said on Saturday (May 20) the city was now under his control but not before it had claimed the lives of 20,000 of his men.

The battle has been the longest and bloodiest of the war so far.

Wagner forces are now expected to pull out of the city and hand it over to the regular Russian army by June 1.


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