Sievierodonetsk mayor says Russian forces seize half of city

SLOVIANSK, Ukraine (AP) — Russian forces in a “frenzied push” have seized part of the jap Ukrainian town of Sievierodonetsk this is key to Moscow’s efforts to temporarily entire the seize of the economic Donbas area, the mayor informed The Associated Press on Tuesday.

“The city is essentially being destroyed ruthlessly block by block,” Oleksandr Striuk mentioned. He mentioned heavy boulevard combating continues and artillery bombardments threaten the lives of the estimated 13,000 civilians nonetheless sheltering within the ruined town that when used to be house to greater than 100,000.

It’s not possible to trace civilian casualties amid the round the clock shelling, mentioned the mayor, who believes that greater than 1,500 citizens have died of more than a few reasons since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in past due February. Evacuation efforts from Sievierodonetsk had been halted as a result of shelling.

“Civilians are dying from direct strikes, from fragmentation wounds and under the rubble of destroyed buildings, since most of the inhabitants are hiding in basements and shelters,” Striuk mentioned.

Electricity to town has been bring to an end and other folks want water, meals and drugs, the mayor mentioned: “There are food supplies for several more days, but the issue is how to distribute them.”

Sievierodonetsk is vital to Russian efforts to seize the Donbas earlier than extra Western hands arrive to reinforce Ukraine’s protection. Moscow-backed separatists already held territory within the area and feature been combating Ukrainian troops for 8 years.

Military analysts described the struggle for Sievierodonetsk as a part of a race in opposition to time for the Kremlin. The town. which is 145 kilometers (90 miles) south of the Russian border, is in a space that’s the remaining pocket of Ukrainian executive regulate within the Luhansk area.

In his nightly video deal with, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy mentioned the placement within the Donbas stays “extremely difficult” as Russia has put its military’s “maximum combat power” there.

At least 3 other folks have been killed and 6 extra wounded in a single day in a Russian missile strike at the town of Sloviansk, west of Sievierodonetsk, Donetsk regional governor Pavlo Kyrylenko mentioned in a Facebook publish on Tuesday morning. A college used to be amongst a number of constructions broken. A crater marked the street between two condominium constructions closely pockmarked by way of shrapnel.

Blood smeared the ground and stairwell of 1 development.

Resident Olena Voytenko, 59, mentioned she knew one of the crucial other folks killed, a person whose condominium stuck fireplace within the blast. She believes he burned to loss of life.

Another resident, Mikhaylo Samoluk, mentioned the strike took place kind of after 1:30 a.m.

“I was on my sofa and suddenly my sofa just jumped in the air,” he mentioned.

In neighboring Luhansk, two other folks have been killed and 4 have been wounded by way of shelling, Luhansk governor Serhiy Haidai mentioned Tuesday on Telegram. Haidai didn’t specify when or the place the assault took place.


Yuras Karmanau reported from Lviv.


Follow the AP’s protection of the struggle at https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This subject matter might not be printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed with out permission.

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