Government call: – “Patriotic citizens” must flee Bachmut

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In view of the fierce fighting in the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, the government in Kiev has called on residents to flee. “If you are sensible, law-abiding and patriotic citizens, you must leave the city immediately,” Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchukin said in a telegram on Friday to the believed several thousand survivors. According to the government, five civilians were killed and nine injured.

Russian troops have been trying to capture Bakhmut for months. The city of once 70,000 inhabitants in the Donetsk region is under constant fire. According to Wereschuk, there are still about 6,000 civilians in the city. Donetsk military governor Pavlo Kyrylenko put the number at just under 5,000 at the start of the week. Authorities at the time had further restricted civilian access, leading to speculation that an orderly withdrawal was being prepared.

The elderly in particular do not want to flee
Many elderly people stay in Bachmut because their apartment or house is their only possession and they don’t want to leave their hometown. Some also sympathize with Russia, which according to Ukrainian sources is stepping up its attacks in the region. “Today it is quite difficult everywhere, because the number of attacks has increased significantly,” said the governor of the Luhansk region, Serhiy Hajday. “There are constant attempts to break through our defenses,” he said of the fighting near the town of Kreminna north of Bakhmut.

Zelenskyy: “Weapons are the only language Russia understands”
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his nightly video address that his priority was to repel the Russian attacks and prepare for a possible counter-offensive of his own. In an interview with the BBC, he again rejected negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin. There is “no trust,” said Zelenskyj, again asking for weapons from the West: “Weapons are the only language Russia understands.”

Russia has now promoted Lieutenant General Andrei Mordvichev as the new commander of the Central Military District, according to the RBC news platform. He replaces Colonel General Alexander Lapin, who has been appointed Chief of Staff of the Ground Forces. According to RBC, Mordvichev led Russian units in the ill-fated offensive in the southern Ukrainian port city of Mariupol.

Source: Krone

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