Russia ‘focuses on establishing control’ over Severodonetsk, Ukrainian military says

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The Ukrainian military reported progress during its counteroffensive in the south and continued efforts to delay Russian advances in the eastern Donbass region.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on Monday reported further Russian efforts to degrade Ukrainian defenses in Luhansk and Donetsk, saying artillery, airstrikes and missiles were used in several locations, especially in Lysychansk and Soledar.

Russian pressure on Severodonetsk, a city where two-thirds of properties have been reported as destroyed, continues – with the General Staff saying hostilities persist in and around the city.

As the Russians attack the Ukrainian lines in the Donbass from the south, east and north, there are conflicting claims as to their advance.

The General Staff said fighting continued around the village of Komyshuvakha, southwest of Severodonetsk. Social media video geotagged by CNN appears to show a Chechen unit in the village, with drone footage suggesting Ukrainian soldiers are withdrawing from the area. A Chechen commander says: “This locality is now under our control, and we will begin to storm all fronts. We have seized, completely, one might say, Komyshuvakha.”

Ukraine has claimed some success in its southern offensive, which began over the weekend. The General Staff said that “the enemy suffered losses and withdrew from the village of Mykolaivka in the Kherson region, which caused panic among the servicemen of other units of the armed forces of the Russian Federation”.

If the Russian forces withdrew from Mykolaivka, this would represent a gain of several kilometers for the Ukrainian units.

The General Staff reported continued cross-border shelling of settlements in the northern regions of Chernihiv and Sumy, as well as the shelling of territory north of the city of Kharkiv which was recently taken over by Ukrainian forces.

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