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Moscow: Russia has escalated its attack on Ukraine using ground forces, airstrikes and artillery shelling as it continues its relentless drive to complete its control of the east of the country, but Kyiv said its forces are resisting fiercely and remain steadfast in their positions.
Heavy fighting was reported Tuesday in frontline towns near the eastern city of Donetsk, where Ukrainian officials said Russian forces were launching attacks as they tried to capture the Donbass industrial area. Pavlo Kirilenko, governor of the Donetsk region, one of two regions that make up Donbass, told Ukrainian television: “The situation in the region is tense, and shelling continues along the front line … the enemy is also using airstrikes to a great deal.” “The enemy did not succeed. The Donetsk region is holding out,” he added.
The Ukrainian military said it repelled ground attacks in the direction of the cities of Bakhmut and Avdiivka and eliminated Russian reconnaissance units, including units near Bakhmut.
But Russia presented a different story. Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov said his forces had taken control of a pro-Moscow factory on the outskirts of the eastern town of Soledar, while other Russian-backed forces said they were “clearing” the heavily fortified town of Pesky “. , and Russian media reported that a group of mercenaries affiliated with the “Wagner” group had taken root near the city of Bakhmut. Some of the places Russia is targeting, such as Pesci, are heavily fortified enclaves crisscrossed by tunnels and trenches where Ukrainian forces have long been stationed. It was not possible to verify the authenticity of either side’s accounts of the battlefield.
British military intelligence, which is helping Ukraine, said Russia’s push into the city of Bakhmut was its most successful operation in the Donbass in 30 days, but added that it had advanced only about 10 km. She explained that the Russian forces in other areas did not advance just three kilometers in the same period. Russia has said it plans, as part of what it calls its “special military operation”, to take full control of Donbass on behalf of separatist forces loyal to the Kremlin, while Russian-appointed officials in parts of southern Ukraine have said they intend to pressure continue with referendums on joining Russia.
HIMARS missile depot destroyed
In addition, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported that its forces launched a powerful missile attack on a warehouse in the Cherkasy region, in which the Ukrainian military collected hundreds of “Himars” missiles and shells for US-made “howitzers”. According to the statement, long-range missiles launched from the sea targeted the warehouse in the town of Uman and “destroyed more than three hundred (HIMARS) missiles, in addition to a large amount of ammunition for US rifles. In a summary of the course of the military operation during the past 24 hours, the ministry’s statement said that the forces Within a day, the Russian forces destroyed two command posts of the Ukrainian forces, an ammunition depot in Lugansk and two other depots in the Kherson and Nikolaev regions, and air defense units shot down a Ukrainian MiG and three drones.
Ukraine, which says Russia is at war in the style of previous empires, relies on advanced missile and artillery systems supplied by the West to undermine Russia’s supply lines and logistics.
A call to “ban all Russians”
Kiev, which has made modest progress in reclaiming territory in recent weeks, is also getting Western help with intelligence, training and logistics, and hopes it can launch a broader counteroffensive in southern Ukraine to drive out Moscow’s forces.
In what appeared to be fear of this danger, Russia moved to strengthen its forces in the south and, according to Britain, focused on strengthening its defenses earlier this week. Neither side has disclosed the number of dead or wounded, but both sides are believed to have suffered heavy losses.
Ukrainian President Zelensky said in an interview with the “Washington Post” that he wants the West to impose a general ban on all Russians, including those who fled Russia since February 24. “Whoever these Russians are…let them go to Russia,” Zelensky was quoted as saying. “Then they will understand … and they will say that this (war) has nothing to do with us. You can’t blame the whole population, can you?”
The Kremlin strongly condemned Zelensky’s call for Western countries to close their borders to Russian visitors to punish Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine, describing it as “illogical”. “This irrational line of thinking goes beyond all limits and can only provoke a negative reaction,” Peskov said on Tuesday, adding that “any attempt to isolate the Russians or Russia will have no chance of success.”
Following Zelensky’s invitation, Estonian Prime Minister Kaia Kallas on Tuesday urged European countries not to issue tourist visas to Russians who want to travel to Europe. “Going to Europe is a privilege, not a human right,” she said in a tweet. “It is time to restrict tourists from Russia.”
In response to her position, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev described Kallas as a “Nazi”. Russia is already subject to many economic sanctions that have negatively affected its economy.