News

Russian forces enter key Ukraine town then pushed back: mayor

By AFP

January 24, 2024 09:19 PM


 

Russian forces entered the war-battered town of Avdiivka for the first time but were pushed back, its mayor told AFP Wednesday, following months of fierce fighting for the industrial hub in east Ukraine.

Moscow in October launched a costly bid to wrest control of the town which has been on the front line of fighting between Ukraine and Russian-backed forces since 2014.

Kyiv has said its forces are holding out against Russia's efforts to encircle the town that had an estimated pre-war population of some 32,000 people.

"Russian sabotage and reconnaissance groups entered the southern part of the city of Avdiivka, but they were dislodged," Avdiivka mayor Vitaliy Barabash said.

He declined to say when Russian forces entered Avdiivka or how long the forces had remained.

"The situation is under the control of the armed forces. The situation is difficult but controlled," Barabash added.

He said there were just under 1,100 civilians remaining in the town and that there no were no children.

The eastern Donetsk region has seen some of the worst fighting of Russia's nearly two-year invasion.

Russia claimed to have annexed the territory alongside three other frontline Ukrainian regions late in 2022.


AFP


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