Russia admits plan to create corridor between eastern and southern Ukraine


One of Russia’s top military officials has for the first time acknowledged plans to build a land corridor between Donbass and Crimea. Fighting continues in Mariupol.

Russia has this Saturday the attacks in eastern and southern Ukraine after first acknowledging that one of his top military commanders has plans to launch a tramp between Donbass and the annexed Crimean peninsula.

According to the General Command of the Armed Forces of the country, Russian troops are conducting offensive operations in the direction of Donetsk along the entire line of contact.

Ukrainian and Russian authorities consider this week to have started the major offensive in the Donbassthough troop movements and activity on both sides indicate that the final battle for territory is yet to come.

Ukrainian media, citing the country’s military, have also reported rocket attacks on the port city Odessathat if the plans to control southern Ukraine with access to the border with Moldova are confirmed, would be one of the new objectives of the Russian armed forces.

Attacks in Mariupol and failed evacuations

Despite the fact that Russia’s conquest of the port of MariupolHeavy fighting continues to thwart Moscow’s attempts to take the city, the British Ministry of Defense has said.

In turn, the Ukrainian army has reported air strikes in the city and the continuation of the blockade of the Azovstal factory, the last stronghold of the city’s defenders.

According to Russia, more than 1,800 Ukrainian soldiers have surrendered since the fighting in Mariupol started more than a month and a half ago, a figure Kiev has not confirmed.

On the other hand, Kiev has reported that the resumption of evacuations from Mariupol, who were suspended for security reasons.

However, pro-Russian militias have accused Ukrainian troops holed up in the city of thwarting the evacuations by firing at places where civilians would gather.

Ukrainian authorities have alleged that the Russians are preventing evacuation to areas controlled by the Ukrainian military in order to force the residents of Mariupol to move to areas under Russian control. Moscow, for its part, has denied hindering the departure of Ukrainians from Mariupol and has assured that citizens leaving the city can freely choose whether to evacuate to areas controlled by separatists or to Kiev.

According to the calculations of the Mariupol authorities, in the port city about 100,000 peoplewhile the pro-Russian militias increase the city’s population to 250,000.

Source: EITB


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