Russian troops are trying to block cities in eastern Ukraine, the governor of the region said, after relentless assaults on nearby cities began to withdraw Ukrainian troops after weeks of fierce fighting.

Russia has also launched missile attacks in areas far from the center of eastern combat.

Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said on Facebook that Russian troops are trying to block the city of Lysychansik from the south.

The city is next to Severodonetsk, which has endured weeks of relentless assault and urban warfare.

(PA graphics)

Russia’s Interfax news agency quoted Andrei Marochko, a separatist spokesman, who said Russian troops and separatist fighters had entered Lysychans’k and that the fighting was taking place in the heart of the city.

There was no immediate comment on the allegations from the Ukrainian side

Lysychans’k and Sievierodonetsk were the focus of Russia’s offensive aimed at occupying the entire Donbas region in eastern Ukraine and destroying the Ukrainian troops that defended it. This is the most capable and combat-enhanced part of the country’s army.

The two cities and their surrounding areas are the last major pockets of Ukrainian resistance in the Luhansk region, 95% of which are under the control of Russian and local separatists.

Russians and separatists also dominate about half of the Donetsk region, the second province of Donetsk.

Russian bombardment has destroyed most of Severodonetsk into rubble, reducing its population from 100,000 to 10,000.

Part of the Ukrainian army, along with about 500 civilians, is trapped in a huge Azoth chemical factory on the edge of the city.

Separatist representative Ivan Filiponenko reported that the military evacuated 800 civilians from the factory at night, Interfax reported.

Ruins of a sports complex at the National Institute of Technology in Kharkiv, Ukraine (Andrii Marienko / AP)

Military analyst Oleg Zudanov said some troops were heading to Lysychans’k after Mr. Haidai said on Friday that Ukrainian troops had begun to withdraw from Sieviero Donetsk.

But Russia’s move to cut off Lysychans’k will give the retreating troops a little rest.

According to Lviv Governor Maxim Kozitzky, four Russian rockets, about 600 miles west, collided with Yarovib’s “military objects.”

He did not disclose the details of the target, but Mr. Jarobib has a considerable military base used to train fighters, including foreigners who volunteered to fight for Ukraine. The base was attacked by a Russian rocket in March, killing 35 people.

Although the Lviv region is far from the front line, it was hit by other rockets during the war and destroyed the fuel storage area.

About 30 Russian rockets were launched on Saturday morning in the Zhytomyr region of central Ukraine, killing one Ukrainian soldier, said regional governor Vitaliy Buchenko.

In the north, about 20 rockets were launched from Belarus into the Chernihiv region, according to Ukrainian troops.

U.S. senior defense officials speaking in Washington on condition of anonymity called the Ukrainian move from Sieviero Donetsk a “tactical retrograde” and integrated the military into a better defensive position on Friday. ..

Locals show a damaged house in Bakumut, Donetsk, Ukraine (Efrem Lukatsky / AP)

This will add to Ukraine’s efforts to keep Russian troops in small areas longer, officials said.

In the early stages of the invasion, which began on February 24, Russian troops have fought Moscow-backed separatists since 2014, following a failed attempt to occupy the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv. I shifted my focus to the Donbus that came.

Four medium-range American rocket launchers arrived after repeated demands on Ukraine’s Western allies for heavier weapons to counter Russia’s firepower dominance.

U.S. defense officials expect more Ukrainian troops to be training to use the High Mobile Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) outside Ukraine on Friday and return with weapons by mid-July. Said that it has been.

The rocket can travel about 45 miles. Eighteen US coastal and river patrol boats will also be sent.

Officials said there was no evidence that Russia had succeeded in blocking the steady flow of military aid from the United States and other countries to Ukraine.

Russia has repeatedly threatened to strike or actually strike such cargo.

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