Ukraine says it is strengthening its defenses to counter Russian push towards Chassiv Yar

The commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian forces, Oleksandr Syrsky, said on Sunday that the troops defending the town of Chasiv Yar, a hot spot on the eastern front, had received additional weapons in order to better block the push of the Russian army, which wants to seize this strategic locality. “Measures have been taken to significantly reinforce the brigades with munitions, drones and electronic warfare equipment,” he wrote on Facebook, saying he had visited the units concerned.

The day before, he had affirmed that the situation on the eastern front had “considerably deteriorated”, ensuring that Russian soldiers were intensifying their pressure towards Chassiv Yar. Seizing it would offer Russian soldiers a chance to advance in the region. This city, perched on a height, extends less than 30 kilometers southeast of Kramatorsk, the main city in the area under Ukrainian control and an important rail and logistics hub for the Ukrainian army.

Russia would like to “capture Chassiv Yar”

Oleksandr Syrsky declared on Sunday that Russia was “concentrating its efforts to break through our defenses west of Bakhmut”, referring to a city conquered by the Russians in May 2023, at the end of a particularly bloody and destructive battle. He assured that the goal of the Russian military command was to “capture Chassiv Yar”, approximately 20km west of Bakhmut, before May 9, the day of commemorations of the victory against Nazi Germany in Russia. Russia thus wants to “create the conditions for a deeper advance” towards Kramatorsk, noted the commander-in-chief.

In recent weeks, the Russian army has also increasingly bombarded the border region of Kharkiv, where the city of the same name, the second largest in the country, is located. On Saturday evening, a strike killed two people in a village in the area, Governor Oleg Synegoubov said on Sunday. Russian attacks on the energy grid also continue to cause power outages in the region.

A Russian drone also killed one person on Sunday morning in the neighboring Sumy region, according to the Prosecutor General’s Office. For his part, the head of the Russian occupation administration in the southern region of Kherson, Vladimir Saldo, said on Sunday that separate Ukrainian strikes killed two people and injured a third in several villages in this area.

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