July 15, 2024

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said during a discussion with American editors in Washington that Ukraine’s Defense Forces are going to liberate Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast and two more Russian-occupied towns.

Source: CNN

Quote from Zelenskyy: “We will de-occupy Bakhmut. I think that we will de-occupy two more cities.”

Details: Zelensky refused to name the cities defenders are going to liberate. “I will not tell you what cities, sorry. And so we have the plan. Very, very comprehensive plan,” Zelenskyy said.

Background:

  • On 18 September, Oleksandr Syrskyi, Commander of the Ground Forces of Ukraine, stated that some of the best and most well-trained units of the Russian army were defeated and lost their combat effectiveness on the Bakhmut front – in particular, the 72nd Separate Motorised Rifle Brigade, the 31st and the 83rd separate air assault brigades. Nevertheless, the Russians do not give up their attempts to take back the positions they have lost.

  • On 20 September, UK intelligence said Russia still controls a railway line near the recently liberated settlement of Klishchiivka but its defence likely weakened in the city of Bakhmut, while the Defence Forces of Ukraine are approaching the road the Russians use as a supply route to Bakhmut from the south of Ukraine.

  • On 21 September, Illia Yevlash, press service chief for Operational Command Skhid (East), during the national 24/7 newscast reported that the Ukrainian Defence Forces are now controlling the Bakhmut-Horlivka road under direct fire, meaning that supply for Russian units on this front became much more difficult.

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