According to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Russia’s losses in the devastated eastern Ukrainian city of Avdiivka could undermine his entire war effort, reports the British news agency “The Telegraph“. Russian attacks in eastern Donetsk, including Avdiivka, were “very intense.” Nevertheless, Zelensky stressed that the defense of Avdiivka was crucial to Kiev’s war plans.
Heavy Russian losses at Avdiivka
“Russia is already losing men and equipment near Avdiivka faster and to a greater extent than near Bakhmut, for example,” Zelensky said. In Bakhmut, Russian forces gained control in May after months of heavy fighting. Despite the difficult situation, it is extremely important to withstand the pressure. “The more Russian forces are destroyed near Avdiivka, the worse the overall situation for the enemy and the overall course of this war will be,” the Ukrainian president warned.
In addition, Zelensky’s chief of staff confirmed for the first time that Ukrainian troops in the southern Kherson region have established a bridgehead on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River. This could open a new line of attack towards occupied Crimea.
Avdiivka in the sights of Putin’s troops
Since the failure of the advance on Kiev in the first days of the invasion, Moscow has focused on eastern Ukraine, particularly targeting Avdiivka since mid-October. Officials in the city, which had a prewar population of 32,000, report that not a single building was left unscathed, according to The Telegraph.