Zelensky visits army positions near Bakhmut: Kyiv

President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday visited military positions near the frontline town of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine, the scene of the longest and bloodiest battle since Russia's invasion, he said.
Ukrainian Presidential Volodymyr Zelensky
This handout picture taken and released by the Ukrainian Presidential press service on March 21, 2023 shows Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during a meeting with Japan’s Prime Minister at Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv. – Japan’s prime minister arrived in Kyiv on March 21, after the foreign ministry announced he was headed on a surprise trip to Ukraine. (Photo by Handout / UKRAINIAN PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SERVICE / AFP) / 

President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday visited military positions near the frontline town of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine, the scene of the longest and bloodiest battle since Russia’s invasion, he said.
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“Donetsk region. The frontline positions of the Ukrainian military in the Bakhmut area,” Zelensky wrote on social media in English.

“I am honoured to be here today to award our heroes. To shake hands and thank them for protecting the sovereignty of our country.”

Video released by Zelensky’s office showed the Ukrainian leader meeting servicemen in a warehouse and handing out awards.

Russian and Ukrainian forces have invested heavily in the battle for Bakhmut, even though analysts say the city carries little strategic value.

Kyiv says the battle for the industrial town, which had a pre-war population of around 80,000 people, is key to holding back Russian forces along the entire eastern front.

Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of Russia’s Wagner mercenary group, which claims to be spearheading Moscow’s offensive for the town, said this week his forces control some 70 percent of Bakhmut.

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