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Last major Ukraine-controlled city in Luhansk region falls to Russia – POLITICO

After weeks of heavy preventing in opposition to Russia, Ukrainian troops have retreated from Lysychansk, the final major Kyiv-controlled city in the jap Luhansk region, the nation’s navy command stated Sunday.

“In order to preserve the lives of the defenders of Ukraine, a decision was made to withdraw,” in accordance to a statement from the General Staff of the Armed Forces.

Ukraine’s navy command stated that given the good “superiority” of Russia’s troops in phrases of weapons, ammunition and personnel, makes an attempt to extend the protection of the city — which had a pre-war inhabitants of round 100,000 — “would lead to fatal consequences.”

The jap region of Ukraine is a major goal for Russia: Moscow-backed separatists have been preventing Ukrainian forces since 2014 in the Luhansk and Donetsk areas that make up the important thing industrial space of Donbas, and Russia’s recognition of the self-styled individuals’s republics there preceded its full-scale invasion of the nation this previous February.

Donbas then grew to become the main target of Russia’s creeping offensive after Moscow’s failure to seize management of Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv at first of the present assault.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated Sunday that “there is a risk” that the entire Luhansk region could possibly be totally occupied by Russian troops quickly. “There are such risks, and we realize them,” he said at a press convention after a gathering with Australian PM Anthony Albanese in Kyiv.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu reported earlier on Sunday to President Vladimir Putin that “full control” had been established over Lysychansk in addition to “a number of nearby settlements,” and declared “the liberation” of the entire Luhansk region.

Zelenskyy stated later throughout his common handle to the nation that Ukrainian troops would search to return to the realm and never let it go.

“Ukraine does not give anything up. And when someone over there in Moscow reports something about the Luhansk region, let them remember their reports and promises before February 24, in the first days of this invasion, in the spring and now,” he stated. “Their current reports will turn into dust just as the previous ones.”

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