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Russia's Kyiv retreat captured by stolen AirPods as bumbling troops give positions away

NewsRussia's Kyiv retreat captured by stolen AirPods as bumbling troops give positions away

Vitaliy Semenets said his Bluetooth headphones were swiped from his home in Hostomel, about 17 miles northwest of Kyiv, early during Russia’s invasion.

However, the Ukrainian then realised he could use Apple’s “Find My” feature to trace the looted headset.

Using the app, Mr Semenets saw the Russian forces retreat from the Ukrainian capital after plans to storm Kyiv were initially axed.

He tracked his stolen headphone as they crossed the border into Belarus.

The troops then reached Belgorod, the Russian city where troops have amassed to prepare for the assault on the Donbas.

Mr Semenets has posted updates of the AirPods’ journey on his Instagram page.

Apple’s ‘Find My’ app can trace devices if they connect to the internet, or if they come close enough to other devices to connect via Bluetooth.

Writing on his Instagram, Mr Semenets said: “Thanks to technology, I know where my AirPods is now.

“It was looted by Russians orcs from my home in Hostomel.”

His post quickly racked up more than 28,000 likes, with one commenter writing, “@apple please get him replacement airpods.”

READ MORE: Ukraine LIVE: ‘How did you allow it!’ Putin humiliation as key ally

It comes as residents returning to Novyi Bykiv, a village 60 miles from Kyiv, after a month of occupation found their homes had been raided of their personal possessions including perfume, jewellery, wine and scooters.

The local school was also looted of most of its computers, the projectors and other electronic equipment.

Leaked CCTV pictures in April showed Russian troops in a post office in Belarus wrapping up washing machines, laptops and e-scooters to send to their families back home in Moscow, Omsk, Ulyanovsk and Novosibirsk.

In total, two tonnes of goods were allegedly shipped out by the 16 Russian troops.


In an intercepted call released by the Security Services of Ukraine, one Russian soldier was given a shopping list from a relative who wanted a laptop, sneakers and clothing.

In another case, it was reported a soldier had been killed in Irpin after he replaced his Kevlar body armour with a Macbook laptop computer.

Vladimir Pastukhov, a liberal Russian political scientist who is a columnist for Novaya Gazeta, said of the looting: “Those who fight like this are not regular army, but rabble.

“Even in the Soviet and Nazi armies, looting was fought as much as possible, albeit not always successfully.

“In the Russian army … it is a form of additional motivation of the personnel.”

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