Fierce Fighting Rages In Near Donetsk, Russia Intensifies Attacks To Eastern Ukraine

Fierce Fighting Rages In Near Donetsk, Russia Intensifies Attacks To Eastern Ukraine
Russia Intensifies Attacks To Eastern Ukraine

Kiev - Heavy fighting raged around the city of Pisky, eastern Ukraine on Thursday (11/8/2022) as Russia vowed to seize all of the Donbass industrial area. An official with the Russian-backed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) said Pisky, on the front line just 10km northwest of the provincial capital Donetsk, was under the control of Russian and separatist forces.

Ukrainian officials deny the heavily fortified city has fallen into Russian hands. The city became the key to the defense of Donetsk. Reuters was unable to verify the veracity of the claims of a number of battlefield accounts.

The Donbass region, which comprises the provinces of Luhansk and Donetsk, has become Moscow's main target after failing to capture the capital Kiev at the start of the war in February. Luhansk is now almost completely under Russian control but Donetsk is still not completely controlled.

Ukraine's presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych said in an interview posted on YouTube that, "Russia's move to Pisky did not work." Luhansk regional governor Serhiy Gaidai, interviewed by Ukrainian television, said Russia had sent a growing number of mercenaries to the region, including from private security firm Wagner.

“We once had peaceful Ukrainian cities. Now that we have been pushed into the Middle Ages ... People are now leaving because they are afraid of freezing in the coming winter,” he said.

Ukraine accused Russia on Wednesday of killing 13 people and wounding 10 with rockets fired from around a captured nuclear power plant in the region's center. Russia has been accused of using nuclear facilities as a shield against Ukraine's retaliatory attacks.

"Cowardly Russia can't do anything anymore so they attack the cities hiding in the Zaporizhzhia atomic power plant," Andriy Yermak, chief of staff of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, said on social media.

Ukraine says about 500 Russian troops with heavy vehicles and weapons are at the nuclear facility, where Ukrainian technicians continue to work. The Ukrainian military said Russia was also bombarding several other areas in the Zaporizhzhia region.

Russia has not commented on the Ukrainian allegations and Reuters could not independently verify the Kiev version. Ukraine and Russia have accused each other of endangering Europe's largest nuclear facility, with an attack nearby.

The Group of Seven (G7), the leading industrialized nations on Wednesday told Russia to hand back nuclear facilities to Ukraine, after the United Nations atomic energy watchdog sounded the alarm over a potential nuclear disaster.

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