(CNN Spanish) – Russia is continuing its advances in eastern Ukraine, an area considered “key” by President Volodymyr Zelensky, in a battle that is increasing by the day and appears to be tilting in favor of Russian forces.
In the final hours, a Ukrainian military commander admitted that Russia already controls “between 70% and 80%” of the city of Severodonetsk, a key area in that region of Donbass.
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The leader of the Luhansk region said that the three bridges of Severodonetsk are now impassable
The three bridges connecting the besieged city of Severodonetsk with its twin city, Lysichansk, to the west, are now impassable for cars, severely limiting evacuation options for those trying to flee the city and internal supply routes. Military Administration of the Luhansk Region.
“The bridges have allowed at least some humanitarian cargo to be transported, which is something to do with the reserves. Currently it is impossible to use the bridges,” Heidi said.
The second of the three bridges was destroyed over the weekend. Heidi’s office explained that the third bridge, which was subjected to incessant bombardment, is now impassable for cars.
Heidi said that destroying the bridges gives the Russian military another advantage, as supply lines are cut. He said obtaining weapons and supplies was now “difficult, but not impossible”.
Heidi added that travel between Severodonetsk and Lysechansk was still possible, but did not go into details for security reasons.
“Lysichansk has already been bombed very harshly, from a heavy caliber [armas]They are destroying everything: humanitarian headquarters and hospitals. But from Lysichansk you can still evacuate people and receive humanitarian goods every day. ”
Heidi also said of Severodonetsk that Russian forces “actually control most of the city,” estimating between 70% and 80% of the territory captured by Russia.
However, he denied the unilateral claims of the Luhansk People’s Republic that Severodonetsk had fallen, saying “this is not true.”
“The Ukrainian defenders still control part of the city,” Heidi said. “If they had taken complete control of the city, the Russian soldiers would not have died there.”
Heidi also said that even if the Ukrainian forces retake the city, it will be impossible to “restore the entire infrastructure before winter. The only thing possible is to put radiators that maintain the temperature in the shops. And yes, everything is broken. With water and electricity .. there will be big problems.” in everything “.
Russia tells Ukrainian fighters to “lay down their weapons” in Severodonetsk
On Tuesday, the Russian Defense Ministry called on Ukrainian fighters in Severodonetsk to lay down their arms “as happened to their comrades who surrendered earlier in Mariupol”.
“We call on the Kyiv official authorities to be wise and to give timely instructions to the militants to end their foolish resistance and withdraw from the territory of the Azot plant,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
The Russian Defense Ministry said it was ready to carry out a “humanitarian operation” on Wednesday to evacuate civilians from the Ukraine-controlled Azot chemical plant to Russian-controlled territory in the north.
The Russian Defense Ministry said that “the Russian army announced its readiness to carry out a humanitarian operation to evacuate civilians from Azot towards the north” to the city of Svatov, located in the territory occupied by Russia.
The head of Ukraine’s military administration in Severodonetsk said on Tuesday that just over 500 civilians were still sheltering at the Azot chemical plant, which remains under Ukrainian control and which authorities say has been heavily bombed by Ukrainian forces.
“Tomorrow, from 8:00 to 20:00 (Moscow time), a humanitarian corridor will be opened and the safe evacuation of all civilians to temporary shelters will be ensured,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.
He further stated that Ukraine had requested a humanitarian corridor to evacuate civilians to the Ukrainian-controlled territory of Lysechhansk, but that “it is not possible to evacuate safely in this direction” because the three main bridges are impassable.
CNN has contacted Ukrainian authorities for comment.
The crossing between Severodonetsk and Lysechansk is now “difficult, but not impossible,” Serhiy Heidi, head of the Luhansk region’s military administration, said on Monday, and Ukrainian authorities said on Tuesday that evacuations had been slow due to the ongoing bombardment, but that it was still possible.
The Russian Defense Ministry called on the Ukrainian fighters to surrender, and said that it would ensure “the preservation of lives and compliance with all standards of the Geneva Convention for the treatment of prisoners of war, as has already happened with their previously surrendered comrades in Mariupol.”
Zelensky says the Battle of Donbass is “one of the most brutal battles in and for Europe.”
In his late-night speech on Monday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the battle for the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine would “certainly go down in military history as one of the fiercest battles in Europe and Europe”.
It comes after Ukrainian military officials said earlier in the day that their forces had been pushed out of the city center of Severodonetsk, which, along with its twin city of Lysechansk, is at the center of the ongoing battle for what remains under Ukrainian control. In the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine, Donbass.
The authorities also said that three major bridges linking Severodonetsk and Lishychansk are now impassable for vehicles, meaning that supply routes and evacuations via those roads are impossible.
Zelensky said the Ukrainians face “a significant advantage for the Russians in the number of equipment, especially in artillery systems.”
“The price of this battle for us is very high. It is simply terrifying. And we draw the attention of our partners on a daily basis to the fact that it is a sufficient number of modern artillery of Ukraine that will secure our interest and finally the end of Russian torture. “from the Ukrainian Donbass,” he said.
On Monday, Zelensky said, a child was killed in Russian shelling in the battle of Lyschansk.
“This is it: a 6-year-old boy on Moskovska Street is also, it turns out, a dangerous enemy of the Russian Federation,” he said.
Ukrainian Prosecutor General investigates mass grave near Pusha
The Ukrainian Prosecutor’s Office said it was investigating the deaths of seven civilians who were found with their hands tied behind their backs near the Kiev suburb of Bucha.
During an investigation of former Russian positions in the forest near the village of Mirotsky, the authorities said that “the bodies of seven civilians with gunshot wounds and their hands tied behind their backs were found in the trenches.”
“Preliminary investigations are being conducted by the Bucha District Department of the National Police in the Kyiv region,” a press release issued on Monday said.
Ukraine’s National Police reported on Monday that attempts to identify the bodies of 1,200 civilians are continuing across the country.
“This is a long, and very laborious process, because many of the bodies are in a state of rot,” National Police Chief Ihor Klimenko told Interfax-Ukraine. “We select the DNA of the relatives who contacted us via the phone line, and then compare the files of these relatives with the files of the dead, buried, shot and unidentified,” he added.
He said the police are currently investigating the deaths of more than 12,000 civilians across the country.
He said that one mass grave containing 116 people was found in Bucha. He said that some mass graves resulted from residents pulling bodies off the streets and burying them in nearby parks.