Russia Captured US Fighters in Ukraine, State Department Investigates

The two Americans that were fighting alongside Ukrainian forces north of Kharkiv and have been missing for nearly a week, sparking fears that they may have been captured by Russian forces, were indeed captured, the Telegraph reported.

A post claiming that two Americans had been captured near Kharkiv was also posted on a Russian propaganda channel on Telegram.

Aware of the unconfirmed reports, the US State Department informed Wednesday it has contacted Ukrainian authorities to find out the fate of two US veteran servicemen, Alexander John-Robert Drueke, 39, from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, from Hartselle, Alabama.

A State Department official refused to give any further comments citing privacy considerations, echoing at the same time recent warnings advising US citizens not to travel to Ukraine because they have been singled out by Russian government security officials.

The mother of one of the captured Americans said she was assured by the US Embassy in Kyiv that they are doing everything they can to find the servicemen and that they are searching for them alive, not dead.

The National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby couldn’t confirm the reports but stressed that they’ll do everything they can to get them back if reports are proven to be true.

Providing photos of both men’s passports and their entry stamps into Ukraine, an individual – reportedly acting as the team’s sergeant – who wished to remain anonymous for security reasons, said that the US servicemen were fighting near the town of Izbytske, under the command of Ukraine’s 92nd mechanized brigade on June 9.

Tweeting about the two missing men, the GOP Congressman Adam Kinzinger underscored that both US servicemen are afforded legal combatant protections since they’ve enlisted in the Ukrainian army, and thus it’s expected for them to be treated in accordance with the Geneva convention as members of the Legion.

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