May 21, 2024

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Putin Russia Ukraine War News: Live Updates

Putin Russia Ukraine War News: Live Updates
attributed to him…Tyler Hicks/The New York Times

RIVNE, Ukraine – Ukrainian forces came close to retaking the strategic eastern city of Lyman on Saturday, just a day after President Vladimir Putin, internationally derided, declared the area where they are located, and three others in Ukraine now part of Russia.

The Battle of Lyman, A city in Donetsk province that had a pre-war population of 20,000, quickly turned into a poorly timed sideshow for the Kremlin after being declared illegal annexation Vast areas of Ukraine and Kiev Stunning victories in the Northeast Last month.

The city’s location on the banks of the Siversky Donets meant that its capture by Ukrainian forces would give them a strategic foothold for their further eastward advance. It would also put additional pressure on the Kremlin, which has faced setbacks at home due to its setbacks on the battlefield and the recruitment of hundreds of thousands of men to fight in Ukraine.

There is still so much uncertainty about the situation unfolding on the ground in Lyman that Ukrainian leaders there are prevented from discussing the ongoing battle with the media. But Ukrainian and pro-Russian officials, pro-Russia social media accounts and unverified photos show that Ukrainian forces clearly have the upper hand.

Denis Pushlin, the leader of the Russian acting administration in the Donetsk People’s Republic, said Friday that the town was “half-encircled”.

“This is very unpleasant news, but we should brazenly look at the situation and draw conclusions from our mistakes,” he said. Mr. Pushlin also said on Telegram that Russia had lost control of the villages of Yambyl and Dobryshev, north and east of Lyman.

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On Friday night, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the military units responsible for the capture of Yambil and hinted at an advance on Lyman.

“We have substantive results in the east of our country,” said Mr. Zelensky. There is already enough general information on this topic. Everyone has heard of what is happening in Lyman, Donetsk region. ”

Pro-Russia bloggers reported with increasing concern Saturday that their team was facing a stinging defeat. One popular account on Telegram messaging app He said that Lyman was “practically surrounded by the enemy”. else expect that the town “will be completely lost in the next 1-3 days”. and third He said That sources “do not rule out the abandonment” of Lyman by Russian forces in order to avoid a siege.

For Russia, the new setback came at a particularly sensitive moment: Less than 24 hours after Mr. Putin on Friday delivered his most fiery speech on the war, one that portrayed the Russian invasion of Ukraine as part of an existential struggle with the West.

Russia should have prevented Ukraine from seeing Lyman as a “matter of principle,” as the nationalist commentator, Igor Kholmogorov, put it, Wrote. “Any retreat would seem a bad omen against the backdrop of yesterday’s events in Moscow.”

Ukrainian officials believe there are more than 1,000 Russian soldiers defending Lyman, and the fall of the villages east and west of Lyman means that Ukrainian forces are close to a direct threat to the Russian supply routes flowing east from the city.

If the Russian forces did not withdraw and cut off the roads to Lyman, the Ukrainian forces would have successfully surrounded the city.

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For the Kremlin, having Russian troops trapped inside the Lyman would be a public relations nightmare. For the Ukrainians, it would be a form of revenge for the encirclement and defeat of their forces in the southern city of Mariupol earlier in the war.

Lyman who fell to the russians In May, it served as a hub for railroads flowing into Donbass, the mineral-rich region consisting of Donetsk and the neighboring Luhansk province that has long been the focus of Mr. Putin’s war targets.

Marco HernandezAnd the Josh HolderAnd the Dan Belevsky And the Matthew Mbok Big Contribute to the preparation of reports.