Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Zelensky says fiercely contested Bakhmut ‘not occupied’ as RUssia claims capture; Bakhmut destroyed but has not fallen, says UKR; Prigozhin’s claim of capturing Bakhmut aimed at distracting from support for UKR; UKR Armed Forces say Prigozhin wants to flee Bakhmut because Wagner Group is broken, LIVE UPDATES and MORE

Zelensky says fiercely contested Bakhmut ‘not occupied’ as Russia claims capture:
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Bakhmut is not occupied by Russia as of Sunday and Ukrainian soldiers remain there, a day after Russia claimed the fiercely contested city’s complete capture.
“We are keeping on, we are fighting,” Zelensky said at a news conference at the G7 in Japan.
Ukraine’s Armed Forces (AFU) said they were continuing to counter Russia in the city, and that they were advancing in the suburbs, making it “very difficult for the enemy to remain in Bakhmut.”
On Saturday the chief of the mercenary Wagner group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, claimed to have captured Bakhmut after months of brutal fighting, saying he would hand it over to Russia later in May,
Russian President Vladimir Putin offered his congratulations for “the completion of the operation to liberate Artemovsk,” Russian state news agency TASS reported the Kremlin as saying, using the Soviet-Russian name for Bakhmut.
CNN is unable to verify either side’s battlefield claims.
If confirmed, the capture of Bakhmut would mark Russia’s first gain in months, but the city’s symbolism always outweighed its strategic importance.
Moscow has thrown huge amounts of manpower, weaponry and attention toward the city but largely failed to break down a stubborn Ukrainian resistance that had outlasted most expectations. --->READ MORE HERE
Twitter/ @AZ_Brittney
Bakhmut destroyed but has not fallen, says Ukraine:
Leaders of the world’s richest democracies said on Sunday they would not back down from supporting Ukraine, in a warning to Russian President Vladimir Putin as he claimed to have taken the eastern city of Bakhmut, something Kyiv denied.
The Group of Seven (G7) summit in the Japanese city of Hiroshima took a dramatic turn this weekend with the arrival of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who flew in on a French government plane to canvass for greater support against Russia’s invasion.
Zelensky, who earlier laid flowers at the cenotaph to victims of the world’s first atomic bombing of a city, said photographs of Hiroshima’s destruction during World War II reminded him of Bakhmut and other destroyed Ukrainian cities.
He also told a media conference there were still soldiers in Bakhmut and the city had not been captured by Russia.
Earlier, he told reporters on the sidelines of the summit that the battered eastern city, the focus of fighting in recent months, was destroyed.
Zelensky, who has made a showstopping appearance at the summit to marshal more military aid, did not give a clear answer when asked which side controlled Bakhmut. “It’s a pity, it’s a tragedy, but for today Bakhmut is only in our hearts,” he said.
A spokesperson for Zelensky, Serhiy Nikiforov, later clarified that the Ukrainian leader was not saying Bakhmut had fallen, but was refuting Russia’s claim to have taken the city. --->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to +++++relevant+++++ and related stories:

+++++Russia-Ukraine News LATEST UPDATES: (REUTERS) (AP) (NY POST) and (WSJ)+++++

+++++Podolyak: Prigozhin’s claim of capturing Bakhmut aimed at distracting from support for Ukraine+++++

+++++Armed Forces of Ukraine say Prigozhin wants to flee Bakhmut because Wagner Group is broken+++++

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