Following the liberation by Ukrainian troops of the northern third of the Kherson region, Russia has begun to fortify the neighboring Crimean peninsulaannexed by the Kremlin in 2014, fearing a further advance by kyiv forces on the southern front.
Ukrainian artillery is already firing daily on the left bank of the Dnieper River, where the Russian army withdrew after losing all territory on the right bank, including the regional capital of Khersonin order to damage the Russian positions.
The spokeswoman of the Southern Command of Ukraine said on Tuesday, nataliya Gumenyukthe Russian troops have had to retreat between 15 and 20 kilometers on the left bank due to the pressure of the kyiv forces.
Russia fears for the fate of Crimea
The possibility that the Ukrainian Army forces the Dnieper and recovers the entire Kherson region is a matter of great concern for the Russian military command, since it would have the clear path to try to break into the Crimea.
The head of the Executive of the annexed Ukrainian peninsula, Sergei Aksionov, announced this Friday that fortifications are being built in the Crimea to ensure the safety of its inhabitants.
“The measures of the Russian Armed Forces and law enforcement, taken on behalf of the president (Vladimir Putin) are enough to make Crimeans feel safe,” Aksionov said in a video posted on Telegram.
However, he admitted that additional “fortification works to ensure the safety of Crimeans” are carried out under his direct supervision.
Aksionov stressed that the main measures for the security of Crimea should be taken in the neighboring Kherson region.
The authorities installed by Moscow in Kherson, annexed by Russia together with the region of Zaporizhzhya and the so-called people’s republics of Donetsk Y lugansk On September 30, at the beginning of the month, they ordered the evacuation of the civilian population from a 15-kilometer-wide strip along the left bank of the river.
The measure was decreed before, a week ago, the Russian troops withdrew from the city of Kherson and the northern third of the region of the same name.
First train from kyiv to Kherson in eight months
Ukraine is now immersed in “stabilization measures” to finish assuming political, military, police, economic and social control of the liberated territory.
This Friday Ukrainian Railways, Ukrazaliznytsia, decided to resume train traffic from kyiv to Kherson.
The first train, which will carry 200 passengers and whose wagons were decorated by Ukrainian painters, will leave kyiv at 10:14 p.m. local time (20:14 GMT) and its arrival in Kherson is scheduled for Saturday at 9:00 a.m. (07:00 GMT).
Rail communication between the two cities will be regular: on even days the train will depart from kyiv and on odd days from Kherson.
In the meantime, fighting has intensified on other frontsespecially in the Donbas.
Ukrainian forces launched an offensive in the direction of the town of Chervonopopovka, in the Lugansk region, but was repelled, the Russian Defense Ministry reported on Friday.
“As a result of concentrated fire from Russian artillery, enemy units halted their advance and dispersed,” Defense spokesman General Igor Konashenkov said in his daily war report.
According to the soldier, at least 40 members of the Ukrainian Army died in that action, which also lost two artillery cars and two armored vehicles.
Artillery and flamethrowers to repel Ukrainian attacks
Next to the towns of Yagodne (Kharkiv region) and Kuzemovka (Lugansk region) the Russian forces destroyed two separate attacks by Ukrainian troops with artillery fire and heavy flamethrowers.
“More than 50 Ukrainian soldiers died and two tanks and five armored vehicles were destroyed,” Konashenkov said.
The general affirmed that the Russian troops took control of the town of opytne, located on the outskirts of Donetsk, the capital of the self-proclaimed people’s republic of the same name. “The enemy unsuccessfully tries to counterattack together with the towns of Sladkoe, Vladimirovka and Pavlovka of the Donetsk People’s Republic in order to stop the advance of Russian troops,” he said.
(With information from EFE)
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