Russian forces continue attacks on Bakhmut to gain an opportunity to advance, and Ukraine has carried out attacks on Russian positions from the air, writes Reuters.
Before the war, 70 thousand people lived in Bakhmut, but now the city has been turned into ruins and into a battlefield. President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky informed in his address on Tuesday, the 28th of February, that the situation in Bakhmut is still the most difficult, and the fighting is becoming more intense.
Taking Bakhmut would also give the Russians the opportunity to seize other settlements in Donetsk. The Ukrainian army reported that more than 20 settlements in Chernihiv, Sumy, and Kharkiv regions were also shelled.
Russian state media RIA has published a video in which Su-25 fighter jets allegedly can be seen above Bakhmut. A man identified as a mercenary of Wagner’s group says in the video that he is happy to see «our forces» and that it provides psychological support.
Oleh Zhdanov, a Ukrainian military expert and reserve colonel of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, said Russian forces had managed to «create a wedge» between two villages north of Bakhmut, part of an effort to encircle the town. He pointed out that this situation poses a clear threat.
Meanwhile, in Washington, US Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl informed Congress that there was
no indication that the Russians could take all of Ukraine or make significant advances anytime soon.
Russian missile strikes on infrastructure this winter have left millions without electricity and water and killed hundreds. International Criminal Court prosecutor Karim Khan visited Ukraine on the 28th of February. The visit is part of the investigation, which should determine whether the actions of Russia have violated the terms of the Geneva Convention.
Russia has said it is carrying out the strikes to weaken the enemy’s army, but Ukraine has said the missile attacks are aimed at intimidating the public.
Kremlin representative Dmitry Peskov repeated on the 28th of February that Moscow is ready for negotiations, but Ukraine and its western allies must recognize the inclusion of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia regions into Russia. Despite several defeats, Russian forces still control about a fifth of Ukraine’s territory.