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Another massive setback for Putin as Russian army flees occupied city – huge breakthrough


Russian forces have abandoned the city of Kreminna, according to officials. It is a significant breakthrough, located just 15.5 miles from key battlefield Severodonetsk.

The capture of Severodonetsk in June followed a Russian offensive lasting more than one month, leaving much of the city in ruins. The strategically important landmark, along with the neighbouring city of Lysychansk, were the last Ukrainian holdouts before Vladimir Putin’s capture of Luhansk.

Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said on Telegram: “The large-scale de-occupation of Luhansk region will begin from Kreminnaya and Svatovo; the Russians have already begun to move equipment closer to these cities. The main impact will be there.

“Today, Kreminna is completely empty – the Russian Army has left the city.

“The Ukrainian flag raised by the partisans flies there.”

Kreminna is situatied 15.5 miles northwest of Severodonetsk (25 kilometres).

If the reports are accurate, it would mean that Ukraine now controls territory inside of Luhansk Oblast, which, before a stunning Ukrainian counteroffensive, was completely controlled by Russian forces.

Over the last 24 hours, a video shared several times on social media was said to be filmed near Kreminna. It shows Ukrainian special forces attacking a Russian vehicle. Express.co.uk could not verify the location the of the video.

Kreminna is located on the same side of the Seversky Donets River, just 15 miles from Severodonetsk, which was captured by Russian forces on June 25.

Capturing Kreminna would give Ukraine a foothold across the river, something which proved extremely difficult for Russian forces who were repeatedly shelled during attempted crossings.

Earlier today, the Luhansk Governor Mr Haidai said on Telegram that the liberation of Luhansk would begin with Kreminna and Svatovo.

Svatovo is further to the north in Luhansk and well east of the Oskil River where the Russian forces claimed they would regroup.

He said: “The large-scale de-occupation of Luhansk region will begin from Kreminnaya and Svatovo; the Russians have already begun to move equipment closer to these cities. The main impact will be there.

“Today, Kreminna is completely empty – the Russian Army has left the city. The Ukrainian flag raised by the partisans flies there.”

Earlier, he said that “every centimetre of Luhansk” would be reclaimed.

The news comes following Russia’s abandonment of the logistics hub of Izyum, which Kremlin forces had held since April.

With the collapse of Russian defences and ground lines of communication in Kharkiv Oblast, it now seems Ukrainian soldiers to the southeast are attempting to put pressure on the Donetsk and Luhansk fronts.

Putin’s stated war goal is the capture, and likely annexation, of these two oblasts, also known as the Donbas region.

The sweeping counteroffensive was likely made possible due to a push in the south of the country by Ukrainian forces – Moscow responded by moving more men and equipment to this front.

The speed with which Ukrainian forces have retaken key towns seems to have surprised Moscow and Ukraine’s Western allies.



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