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Governor: Russians building a foothold in an important Ukrainian city

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The Associated Press

Associated Press

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) —Russian troops are strengthening their position in a tough battle to occupy the last resistance base in Luhansk Oblast, eastern Ukraine, the regional governor said on Sunday. Said.

Ukrainian fighters have spent weeks protecting the city of Lysychans'k and preventing it from falling into Russia, as neighboring Sievier Donetsk did a week ago. .. The presidential adviser predicted that the fate could be decided within a few days.

"The occupiers threw all their power into Lysychans'k. They attacked the city with incomprehensible and cruel tactics," Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said in a Telegram messaging app. "They suffer great losses, but move forward stubbornly. They are building a foothold in the city."

The river separates Lysychans'k and Sievierodnetsk. increase. Oleksiy Aresevich, an adviser to the President of Ukraine, said in an online interview late Saturday that Russian troops crossed the river from the north for the first time, creating a "threatening" situation.

Arrestvic said they had not reached the center of the city, but the process of the battle showed that the battle of Lysychans'k would be decided by Monday. In May, Ukrainian and British officials reported that Russia had crossed the Donets River and lost almost the entire battalion in an attempt to set up a bridgehead.

By taking Lysychans'k, Moscow will approach its goal of occupying the entire Donbas region of Ukraine. Donetsk, which is adjacent to Luhansk, is the two states that make up Donbus, and Russia has focused on attacks since it withdrew from northern Ukraine and the capital Kieu in the spring.

Pro-Russian separatists have held parts of both eastern states since 2014, and Moscow recognizes all of Luhansk and Donetsk as sovereign republics. I am. The Syrian government announced on Wednesday that it would also recognize two areas of "independence and sovereignty."

Adjacent Belarusian leader, Russia's ally, claimed on Saturday that Ukraine launched missiles on military targets on Belarus' territory a few days ago, all of which were intercepted by air defense systems. President Alexander Lukaschenko described the alleged strike as a provocation and said Belarusian soldiers were not fighting in Ukraine.

There was no immediate response from the Ukrainian army.

Belarus hosted Russian troops and was used as the stage for the Russian invasion. Last week, a few hours before Lukaschenko met Russian President Vladimir Putin, a Russian long-range bomber launched its first missile from Belarus' airspace into Ukraine.

Lukaschenko has resisted efforts to bring his army into war. However, during the meeting, Putin announced plans for Russia to supply Belarus with the Iskander-M missile system, reminding Lukaschenko that his government relies on financial support from Russia.


Report on the Russian-Ukraine War by AP