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Ukrainian troops withdraw from Lysychans'k, the last holdout in major regions

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu reported to President Vladimir Putin on Sunday that troops had hijacked Lysychans'k and many nearby settlements. .. Department of Defense.

Ukrainian troops announced on Sunday that they were "forced to withdraw" from important cities.

Luhansk is one of the two regions forming the Donbus in eastern Ukraine, where the conflict between Ukraine and Russian-backed separatists began in 2014. His armywas unable to take over Kyivearlier this year.

With the collapse of Lysychans'k, Russia is nearing its goal of hijacking Donbus.

"After a fierce battle for Lysychans'k, Ukrainian defense forces were forced to withdraw from their occupied positions and lines," the Ukrainian General Staff said on Twitter. Said on Sunday.

The presentation was accompanied by a photo that said "Lysychans'k: I'll be back."

A Facebook post by the Ukrainian Army also cites Russia's superiority in weapons, ammunition and personnel in urban battles.

"We are fighting. Unfortunately, steel will and patriotism are not enough for success-we need materials and technical resources," the post read.

Pro-Russian separatists in the region had already claimed victory in the fight against Lysychans'k.

Leonid Paseknik, leader of the Russian-backed self-proclaimed People's Republic of Luhansk (LPR), has declared the Luhansk region "liberated".

"Today is the day we all achieved what we have been working for for eight years. Today, with the support of the Russian army, our troops have liberated the town of Lysychansik and history. Republic within the national border. "

Only Russia and Syria recognize LPR as independent. Ukraine and its western allies believe it is part of the Ukrainian territory currently under Russian occupation.

A video shared by the Russian state news agency Leah Novosti on Saturday is intended to show the inhabitants of the old Soviet Union flag on the corrupt monument of Rishchansik.

The Institute for the Study of War said Russia is likely to establish control over the rest of the territory of the Luhansk region in the coming days. Later, the institute said in a recent update that Russian troops are likely to focus on the Ukrainian location of Siversk, west of Lysychans'k, before directing the endorheic to Slovyansk and Bakumut.

The Donetsk junta said on Sunday that Russian troops continued to bombard Slovyansk and Bakumut.

At least six people were killed and 15 injured in Slovyansk on Sunday, according to Tetiana Tiurina, head of public relations and communications in the Donetsk region.

According to the Donetsk junta in Ukraine, the city of Kramatorsk was also hit three times on Sunday morning, with no casualties.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said cities in the Luhansk region are "earthquakes" of hostilities. In his nightly speech on Saturday, Zelensky admitted that more than 2,600 Ukrainian cities and towns were under Russian control.

"Russian troops continued to launch missiles in our city," Zelensky told people, "helping the army, helping volunteers, helping everyone who was left alone at this time." Use your contact information to "disseminate the truth about the war and the crimes of the occupiers of our land."

Meanwhile, the city's exiled mayor Ivan Fedrov said in a video address the morning that Ukrainian troops had destroyed a Russian military base in occupied Melitopoli in southern Ukraine earlier on Sunday. Said.

Melitopol came under Russian control in early March, a few weeks after the Kremlin invaded Ukraine.

According to Fedrov, the Ukrainian army "fired more than 30 shots at the military base alone" and made it "inoperable".

"Now the whole city is covered in smoke. This lasts three to four hours. The warehouses on the territory of the transport airbase are on fire," Fedrov added.

Evgeny Baritzky, head of the Russian council in the Zaporizhia region, said in a telegram post on Sunday that "the shell fell on the territory of the airfield" and "no casualties". Stated.

Russian national news agency RIA Novosti also confirmed the attack, reporting that Ukraine had attacked the Aviagorodok region of Melitopol's, but did not specify what it targeted.

Russia and Belgorod claim Ukrainian strikes against their territory

The Russian Defense Ministry also said that Ukrainian troops "intentionally strike" residential areas. The Russian cities of Belgorod and Kursk claimed to have started on Sunday.

Lieutenant Igor Konashenkov, a spokesman for the ministry, said in a statement that Ukrainian troops had targeted the city with Tochika U ballistic missiles equipped with cluster munitions and drones.

He said three ballistic missiles launched in Belgorod were destroyed by the Russian air defense system in the air, adding that the remains of one of the missiles fell into a house in the city.

Kona Schenkov also claimed that Russia's air defense system destroyed two Ukrainian military drones when it approached the city of Kursk, about 130 km (80 miles) north of Belgorod.

CNN could not independently confirm these claims and the Ukrainian army has not yet commented on the strike.

Belgorod Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said in a statement posted on his Telegram channel that at least three people were killed and dozens of homes were damaged by an early Sunday morning explosion. ..

Separately, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukaschenko accused Ukraine of launching a missile attack on its military base two days ago on Saturday.

Ukrainian troops did not immediately respond to CNN's request for comment on Lukaschenko's allegations.

Lukaschenko, Putin's main ally in the region, said his country was being dragged into a war with Ukraine: "No Belarusian soldier is fighting on Ukrainian territory. Not. "

Russian troops launched an invasion of Ukraine from Belarus on February 24, after gathering personnel and supplies along the Ukrainian border for several months.

According to information gathered by NATO surveillance aircraft and CNN reports, support for Belarus' invasion of Russia includes aerial operations in addition to ground support.