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Bakhmut – Russian troops shelled the city of Bakhmut. Bakhmut has been the focus of their attempts to seize the Donbass industrial area in eastern Ukraine for months, and the commander of the Russian Wagner mercenary unit said Ukrainian forces were rushing in front of the “inevitable” counter. said it does. -attack.

The General Staff of the Ukrainian Army said fighting was taking hold in Bakhmut and surrounding areas, according to a Facebook report.

He said Russian forces could not advance in two villages to the northwest. At least a dozen locations were attacked by Russia.

Separately, Ukrainian Eastern Army spokesman Serhiy Cherevatiy told state television on Wednesday that in the past 24 hours, Russian forces had carried out 324 attacks using artillery and multiple rocket launchers. .

“The Russians are destroying Bakhmut buildings to prevent soldiers from using them as fortifications,” Cherevatiy said.

Mr Cherevatiy said on Tuesday that there had been a record number of attacks near the city of Kupiansk in northeastern Ukraine and on parts of the front further north.

The governor of Mykolaiv province in southern Ukraine said Russian missiles hit apartments and private homes in the city of the same name.

One person was killed and 15 injured, Vitaliy Kim wrote on the Telegram messaging app.

Reuters was unable to confirm the battlefield report.

Grand Prize

However, Bahmut is still a coveted prize by the Russian military. They spent about nine months trying to invade the largely destroyed city and secured several central districts in a conflict that is now in its 15th month.

Ukrainian forces have pledged to defend the city, once a city of 70,000 people, but Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky suggested earlier this month that it might withdraw if it threatened an encirclement.

The Russian Wagner mercenary group has spearheaded many of its forays into Bakhmut, and its founder, Evgeny Prigozhin, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, said this month that its troops had taken up 80% of the city. said to control

On Wednesday, Prigogine said in a video message:

Prigozhin, who criticizes Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, said his troops “will advance at all costs just to crush the Ukrainian army and disrupt their offensive.” Russians slam front-line positions in Bakhmut, Ukrainian military says

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