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Sunday, March 26, 2023

The command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine decided to continue the defense of Bakhmut

The headquarters of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief of Ukraine has decided to continue the defense operation in Bakhmut (Artemivsk), the fighting of which has been going on since the summer of 2022. reported on the site of the office of the President of the country Volodymyr Zelensyy.

The report states that at the next meeting of the headquarters, the commanders of the operational and strategic groupings of troops reported on the situation in the main directions of the front, and Zelenskyy asked the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzny and the commander of the operational-strategic grouping of troops “Khortitsa” Alexander Syrsky a question about plans for future actions in the direction of Bakhmut . Both spoke in favor of strengthening the positions in Bakhmut and continuing the defensive operation.

“In addition, at the meeting of the headquarters, the issues of the supply of weapons and equipment and their distribution to the operational areas were discussed,” reports the website of Zelenskyy’s office.

The meeting was also attended by the Head of the Presidential Office, Andrii Yermak, the Head of the GRU of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Kirill Budanov, the Head of the Ukrainian Government, Denis Shmyhal, and the Secretary of National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Oleksiy Danilov.

Earlier, German newspaper Bild, citing sources in Ukraine’s political leadership, reported that there were disagreements between Zelenskyy and Zaluzhny over the situation in Bakhmut (Artemovsk), whose battles have been going on since summer 2022.

The publication claims that the President and the Commander of the Armed Forces of Ukraine have “fundamentally different views” on Bakhmut’s fate. A few weeks ago, Zaluzhny allegedly recommended considering the possibility of withdrawing troops from the city in order to avoid large-scale losses, and even at an early stage of the defense he spoke about the need to leave Bakhmut , but the government, according to Bild, insists on keeping it.

A certain military adviser, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Ukrainian troops were due to leave Bakhmut three weeks ago. “At first Bakhmut was a trap for the Russians, now he has become a trap for us,” a source told the German newspaper.

The situation with Bakhmut

In mid-February 2023, Zelenskyy called the situation in the Bakhmut leadership “the most difficult and hottest” and compared the city itself to a “living fortress”, while noting that the Ukrainian military would not hold it “at any price”.

Zelenskyy’s economic adviser, Alexander Rodnyansky, provided for the possibility of a “strategic retreat” if necessary, so as not to “sacrifice everyone for nothing”. According The Wall Street Journal newspapers, Ukraine lost several units of the most experienced military personnel near Bakhmut.

In early March, Wagner PMC founder Yevgeny Prigozhin reported that fighters from a private military company “virtually surrounded” Bakhmut, but the representative of the Eastern Group of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Serhiy Cherevaty, said on March 5 on the air of the national telethon that the Ukrainian units had not left the city and continued to hold the defense.

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