Ukrainian soldiers say this puppy can predict enemy attacks

Irpin lays in ruins after Russians attack Kyiv's neighbour city

It turns out there’s a key figure in the Russian invasion of Ukraine which we’ve been overlooking this whole time.

It’s not Vladimir Putin, Volodymyr Zelensky, Joe Biden or even Boris Johnson that we should be focusing on – it is, in fact, a puppy which could prove vital to the outcome of the conflict.

Or at least, that's what one of the most popular inside jokes in the Ukrainian military would have us believe.

NPR Investigative Correspondent Tim Mak posted an update during the conflict, and filled in followers about a joke shared by troops on the ground.

The journalist posted a picture of the puppy being held by a soldier and shared the story he’d heard about the adorable animal.

“In other Ukraine dog news, a puppy named Bayraktar was born at the Police Canine Center in Kyiv a few months before the war,” he wrote.

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“They say he is ‘capable of predicting enemy attacks’ and have an inside joke that every victory they have locally has part of Bayraktar’s hand in it.”

Social media users were quick to share the story about Bayraktar – and praise him as a very good boy indeed.

“I speak for most people when I say, good boy,” one said.

Another added: “Look at that floof. 15/10 very good boy.”It’s just one of the stories from the front line shared online over recent days, as the conflict reaches its second week.

Meanwhile, more moving footage has emerged from the war today, after a survivor of the Siege of Leningrad was arrested in Russia for protesting against the war.

An eldery pensioner, Yelena Osipova, is seen being taken away by riot police in St. Petersburg in the viral footage.

A new video from ITV News also shows a team of reporters join a convoy out of Mariupol, after the city came under the control of Russian troops.

The terrifying footage shows the barrel of a Russian tank turning towards the camera, which was documenting the route taken by senior international correspondent John Irvine and his team

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

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