The Russians claim to have “completely liberated” the residential areas of this strategic city for control of the entire Donbass coalfield in eastern Ukraine.
“The takeover of its industrial zone and neighboring localities continues,” said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in a rare televised briefing on Tuesday.
An inventory disputed by kyiv. “Our soldiers managed to repel the assault in the city of Severodonetsk,” assured the Ukrainian general staff on Wednesday morning, adding that Russia is also intensifying its operations in Bakhmout, in the Donetsk region.
“It is very difficult to hold Severodonetsk”, however recognized the day before Serguiï Gaïdaï, the governor of the region of Lugansk, which, with that of Donetsk, forms the Donbass. Mr. Gaïdaï even speaks of “mission impossible”.
“All forces, all reserves have been mobilized by the enemy, the Russian army, to cut off the main Lysychansk-Bakhmut road in order to take Severodonetsk. They are shelling Lysychansk very violently,” the governor said.
– “Vital need for weapons” –
The cities of Severodonetsk and Lyssytchansk, separated by a river, constitute the last agglomeration still under Ukrainian control in the Lugansk region. Their capture would open the road to Kramatorsk, a large city in the Donetsk region, to the Russians.
For his part, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky assured in his daily video address on Tuesday evening that “the situation on the front has not changed significantly in the last 24 hours” and that “the absolutely heroic defense of Donbass continues”.
For this, however, Ukrainian soldiers have “a vital need for heavy weapons that can counter enemy artillery”, asked Mr. Gaïdaï, claiming “Western artillery”.
kyiv is already claiming to have inflicted a heavy toll on its invader. “More than 31,000 Russian soldiers have died in Ukraine,” Zelensky said on Tuesday evening.
“Since February 24, Russia has been paying for this completely senseless war almost 300 lives of its soldiers every day. But there will be a day when even for Russia the number of casualties will become unacceptable.”
No record is verifiable. However, the death of a Russian general, Roman Kutuzov, was confirmed on Tuesday by the leader of the pro-Russian separatists Denis Pushilin. Several Russian generals have lost their lives since February, but Moscow rarely communicates on its losses.
The two belligerents accuse each other of destroying cereal resources and thus aggravating the world food crisis.
“Those who claim to be worried about the global food crisis are actually hitting agricultural fields and infrastructure, where fires are breaking out on an impressive scale,” the Ukrainian Operational Command for the Southern Front denounced on Tuesday evening, referring in particular to strikes. around Mykolayev (south).
At the same time, the Russian Ministry of Defense assured that the Ukrainian forces “purposely set fire to a large grain depot” in the port of Mariupol.
“More than 50,000 tons of cereals have thus been destroyed,” assured General Mikhail Mizintsev, accusing the kyiv regime of “food terrorism against its own people”.
– Meeting in Ankara –
The creation of secure maritime corridors for the export of grain by the Black Sea will be at the heart of discussions on Wednesday in Ankara between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Turkish counterpart, Mevlüt Cavusoglu.
Mr. Lavrov arrived the day before in Turkey and will discuss the possibility for Ukraine to export its harvests blocked in its ports.
A blockage which is causing prices to soar and posing the threat of famine in certain countries of Africa and the Middle East.
At the request of the UN, Turkey has offered its help to escort maritime convoys from Ukrainian ports, despite the presence of mines, some of which have been detected near the Turkish coast.
The Ukrainian press assured that “the United Nations and Ukraine” would be associated with the discussions on Wednesday, but the Ukrainian embassy in Ankara denied any contact between Ambassador Vasyl Bodnar and Mr. Lavrov.
Tuesday evening, Mr. Zelensky also announced the publication next week of a “Book of executioners”.
This database will compile information on war crimes and Russian soldiers accused of committing them.
Mr. Zelensky promises that the people who gave the orders will also be cited. “I have repeatedly stressed that they will all be held accountable. And we are going there step by step,” said the Ukrainian president. “Everyone will be brought to justice,” he promised again.
At the end of May, the Ukrainian justice system claimed to have identified “a few thousand” cases of alleged war crimes in the Donbass.