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Ukraine's defiant forces are taking revenge for an unlikely war hero kidnapped in the most bizarre fashion by writing a tribute to the beloved racoon on future shells used against Russia.
Earlier this week, Russian President Vladimir Putin's troops were filmed trying to steal animals from the zoo in the Ukrainian city of Kherson before they retreated.
But it saw the beasts fight back against the invaders.
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Footage of the attempted animal theft had gone viral and included one soldier chasing a raccoon around and others struggling to get a llama on a truck.
The raccoon was the star of the show, with many saying that the little fella was “fighting” back against the Russians.
An advisor to the Ukrainian minister of internal affairs, Anton Gerashchenko, was the first to post the clip.
He said: “While retreating from Kherson Russians stole animals from the local zoo.
“A stolen raccoon caused the most talk – on the video, it is fighting with all his strength.”
And now it appears that Ukrainian forces are taking revenge.
Footage and images have emerged of soldiers writing “for the raccoon” on mortar shells being prepared to fire at enemy Russian troops.
Written in permanent marker, the images went viral on Twitter overnight.
Ukraine-born ex-Japanese Super GT racer Igor Sushko tweeted: “Ukrainian shell signed 'For the Raccoon!' Russians stole many animals including a baby raccoon as they emptied the Kherson Zoo before running away.'”
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Another wrote: “Fly strong and true in the name of Raccoon the innocent, in fact, I would rename all the missiles 'Justice'.”
And a third posted: “Is there anything that this disgraced army won't loot or destroy – they are a disgrace to themselves and humanity.
“They have lost all self respect dignity.”
There were rumours that that one of the Russian soldiers responsible for stealing the animals actually owns a zoo in Russia, but this has not been verified and the location and fate of the stolen animals is still unknown.
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- Vladimir Putin
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