6:40 am: Difficult situation in Bakhmout

Moscow concentrates its firepower on the Ukrainian redoubt in the Lugansk region, trying to surround the towns of Severodonetsk and Lyssytchansk. The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense also reported heavy fighting in progress nearby, near the localities of Popasna and Bakhmout, which draws a strategy of encirclement.

The fall of Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast would give the Russians control of a crucial crossroads that currently serves as an impromptu command center for much of Ukraine’s war effort.

The inhabitants, in any case, are reluctant to flee, despite the risks: “People do not want to leave”, laments the deputy mayor of Bakhmout, Maxim Soutkovyï, in front of a half-empty bus ready to take civilians to territories safer. “We have reached a point where we are in the process of making evacuations compulsory”, even advances the head of the military administration of Bakhmout, Serguiï Kalian.

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