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Shoigu: Russian forces occupied the city of Marginka

Shoigu: Russian forces occupied the city of Marginka

“What is no less important is that it was possible to push the Ukrainian artillery line significantly back, towards the west of Donetsk, and this allows us to defend the latter more effectively,” Sogo said.

The Defense Minister stressed that the seizure of Marzhinka reduces the defensive capabilities of Ukrainian forces, while opening additional opportunities for Russian forces to act on this front.

According to Sogo, over the past nine years the Ukrainian army has turned the city, located just five kilometers southwest of Donetsk, into a real fortress, building underground passages underneath it. He added: “On almost every street, artillery positions, bunkers and a complex network of underground tunnels were built, well fortified and adequately protected from air and artillery strikes. Thanks to the determination of our soldiers, we captured the fortress.”

The Ukrainian army denied the Russian announcement. Ukrainian army spokesman Oleksandr Stubon said, “It is not appropriate to talk about the occupation of Marzhinka.” He added, “Our forces are in the city.”

Belarusian President Aliaksandr Lukashenko, who visited St. Petersburg earlier in the day, said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is slowly beginning to see the need for a political settlement.

I think the opportunity exists (to find a solution to the conflict in Ukraine in 2024). We will work more closely with the leadership in Kiev so that they understand that this is their only chance. “If they don’t live with it, there will be a complete collapse,” Lukasinka said.

“Today this (recognition) has also reached the politicians. The soldiers are always trying to put pressure (on them) because they see the situation. The pressure is very strong. Based on Zelensky's press conferences, you must have noticed that he also started to say, 'I understand this,'” added the President of Belarus.

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Cover image source: Getty Images

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