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Russia captured two cities and a key route in the east

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The Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces said Russian forces took control of the towns of Loskutivka and Rai-Oleksandrivka, and were trying to capture Sirotine, outside the city of Severodonetsk.

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Russia controls most of Severodonetskthe administrative capital of Lugansk province, after weeks of aerial and artillery bombardment and heavy street-to-street fighting with the Ukrainian army.

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The bulk of the Ukrainian troops that remain in the city are entrenched in a chemical plant, Azot, on the fringes of the urban perimeter. Along with them there are about 500 civilians, according to local authorities.

Russian forces have redoubled their offensive against Lisichansk, which is situated on a steep ravine formed by the Donest River, just opposite Severodonetsk, as part of their drive to conquer the entire region known as Donbass.

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Russia already controls 95% of Lugansk and about half of Donetskthe other province that forms the Donbass, which borders Russia.

Both provinces, where Russian is the most widely spoken language, were already partly in the hands of pro-Russian separatists since 2014, who have proclaimed them “people’s republics” recognized by Russia.

The British Defense Ministry said Russian forces had advanced more than 5 kilometers south of Lisichansk since last Sunday.

“Some Ukrainian units have withdrawn, probably to avoid being locked down,” the statement said.

“Russia’s better performance in that sector is probably the result of recent reinforcement units and a heavy concentration of fire,” he added, the Europa Press news agency reported.

Russia closer to cutting off supplies to Ukrainian troops in the east

The Armed Forces of Ukraine said that Russian troops also sought to seize hills overlooking a highway from Lisichansk to Bakhmut to the southwest in an attempt to cut off supply routes for Ukrainian troops.

A commander of the pro-Russian separatists, who fight alongside Russia, said his forces already had “logistical control” of the highway, so it was no longer possible for Ukrainian forces to receive reinforcements or supplies from Bakhmut.

“Their resistance is pointless, useless. I think that at the rate our soldiers are going, very soon the entire territory of the Luhansk People’s Republic will be liberated,” Lt. Col. Andrei Marochko told the AFP news agency.

Luhansk Governor Sergei Gaidai confirmed hours later that traffic on the route had been cut off by the enemy.

The Russian army is “conducting offensive operations to encircle our troops in the Lisichansk area, and they are blocking the road” to Bakhmut, he said.

Gaidai added that one person was killed and three others wounded yesterday in Russian shelling of Lisichansk, including one that destroyed a school.

“We have three wounded in one day, who were admitted to hospitals in Kramatorsk and Pavlograd. The day before yesterday, late in the afternoon, the body of a lifeless man with injuries received during the shelling was found,” he said.

New military arsenal arrived in Ukraine

While, The Government of Ukraine today announced the arrival of US high-precision missile launch systems Himars in the countrypromised by Washington to reinforce the military arsenal of its army and to face the Russian invasion.

“The Himars have arrived in Ukraine,” said Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, who thanked his American counterpart, Lloyd Austin, for these “powerful tools,” after calling him his “personal friend and colleague,” in a message on Twitter. next to a picture of the mobile rocket launcher system installed on light armored vehicles.

The minister stated that this summer was going to be “the last” for some of the Russian occupiers, without specifying how many rocket launchers Ukraine received.

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 from three directions and in April launched an offensive to capture Donbass after withdrawing its troops from the outskirts of kyiv, the capital, and other areas in the north of the neighboring country.

Russia already fully or partially controls five provinces of Ukraine, including the two in Donbass.

Asked today about a possible political understanding to end the conflict, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said that “it is possible once Ukraine meets all Russian demands.”

“Ukraine knows perfectly well what they are,” added spokesman Dmitri Peskov.

The Kremlin has demanded that Ukraine accept Russian sovereignty over Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula that Russia annexed in 2014, shortly before the conflict between kyiv and Donbass separatists broke out.

Moscow also wants Ukraine to recognize the republics proclaimed by the Lugansk and Donetsk separatists.

Russia has also said that Ukraine should recognize “the reality on the whole ground”, which seems to allude to the territorial conquests that its Army has made in the south of Ukraine, where it controls the entire province of Kherson and part of Zaporizhia. .

In addition, Russia occupies part of the Kharkov province, which borders Donbass and Russian territory.

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Source: Ambito

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