Ukraine and Russia Face Off in Battle for Bakhmut
Ukraine’s ground forces commander Oleksandr Syrskyi has visited the troops defending Bakhmut twice in the past week as Russia continues to mass troops in an attempt to take over the city. On Saturday, Russian defense minister Sergei Shoigu made a rare visit to Russian-held Ukrainian territory in southern Donetsk, awarding medals and meeting commanders. The Russian defence ministry also released images of Shoigu “inspecting Russian reconstruction efforts of infrastructure” in Mariupol.
US-based military analysts at the Institute for the Study of War believe Ukrainian forces are likely conducting a limited tactical withdrawal from parts of Bakhmut. Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has paid tribute to fighters in the Donbas, saying “it is one of the toughest battles. Painful and challenging.” US President Joe Biden has applauded Germany’s commitment to providing military and other support to Ukraine, while the US has announced a further $400 million in military aid to boost Kyiv's depleted ammunition stocks.
Russia’s Yevgeny Prigozhin, founder of the Wagner mercenary group, has said his units had “practically surrounded” Bakhmut, although the Russian defence ministry has said it hit a command centre of the Ukrainian Azov Regiment in the Zaporizhia region. The death toll from a Russian missile strike that hit a five-storey apartment block in the southern Ukrainian city Zaporizhzhia on Thursday has risen to 13.
0. “Race to get last children out of Bakhmut as city becomes ‘hell on earth’” The Guardian, 4 Mar. 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/mar/04/ukraine-last-battle-to-hold-bakhmut
1. “Russia-Ukraine war at a glance: what we know on day 376 of the invasion” The Guardian, 6 Mar. 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/mar/06/russia-ukraine-war-at-a-glance-what-we-know-on-day-376-of-the-invasion
2. “Ukraine Isn't Leaving Bakhmut Without a Fight” Newsweek, 6 Mar. 2023, https://www.newsweek.com/ukraine-not-leaving-bakhmut-without-fight-russia-wagner-group-1785651
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