Russia announced the “liberation” of the Luhansk region. Putin received a special report

  • Lysizansk was the last major Ukrainian-controlled city in the Luhansk region
  • Conquering the city was part of Russia’s short-term goal during the invasion of Ukraine
  • Experts predict the actions of the Russians and Ukrainians in the coming days
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“Today, July 3, 2022, the Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation General Sergei Shoigu reported to the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin on the liberation of the Luhansk People’s Republic,” the newspaper said. Publication of the Ministry of Defense of Russia.

Lysizansk was the last major Ukrainian-controlled city in the Luhansk region. It is located on the west bank of the Donets Siewierski River. Severodonetsk, on the other hand, collapsed last week.

Capturing both cities was Russia’s short-term goal during its invasion of Ukraine. However, the Kremlin gradually scaled back its plans, declaring war on Donbass in April, in which it wanted to encircle the bulk of the Ukrainian army and capture the entirety of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions.

The Ukrainians were able to clear the crossings through Tonik Siviersky, but the Russians approached Lysisansk from the south. A few weeks ago, they successfully overcame Ukrainian defenses near the town of Popasna.

On Saturday evening, footage of Russian troops in the city center appeared online. On Sunday morning, the head of the Luhansk region, Serhii Haydey, said the Russians were in the city and advancing..

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Officially, the Ukrainian authorities did not confirm the loss of Lisiczansk. On Sunday morning the National Guard announced that fighting was taking place outside the city and that the soldiers were not surrounded by the Russians.

An adviser to Ukrainian Defense Minister Yuriy Zak said the Russians did not have “full control” over Lysychansky. In the city, fighting was to be “very intense for some time” and Russian ground forces were “continuously attacking the city”.

– However, even if Russia captures the entire Luhansk region, it does not mean that the war for Donbass is over. He noted that there are other large cities in the Donbass region, particularly in the Donetsk region under Ukrainian control, as quoted by the BBC.

The US Analytical Center, the Institute for Combat Studies, estimates that in the coming days, Russia’s priority will be to attack Ukrainian positions in the city of Seversk in Donetsk Oblast (about 20 km west of Lysizansk). Attack on Slavyansk and Bakhmut.

The withdrawal of Ukrainian forces to Sieviers would allow them to reduce the risk of encirclement by the Russians. ISW’s experts wrote that the Ukrainians could also continue fighting, while retreating to positions near the stretch of the E40 road between Sloviansk and Bagmut.

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