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Despite claims from Russia’s defense minister that Moscow controls the embattled eastern town of Maryinka, Ukraine’s armed forces commander has countered that his troops still hold positions on the town’s northern flank.

Commander Valery Zaluzhnyi admitted to reporters that while Maryinka has been reduced to ruins after prolonged fighting, Ukrainian forces have not entirely relinquished their hold on the area. The town, which lies near the Russian-held regional center of Donetsk, has been a focal point of intense conflict for two years.

Zaluzhnyi’s statements come amid reports from a Ukrainian war blog suggesting Russian forces have seized all previously contested parts of Maryinka. If confirmed, the capture of Maryinka would represent Moscow’s most substantial battlefield victory since May.

Zaluzhnyi emphasized Ukraine’s commitment to defending its territory, stating, “Our troops had readied a defensive line outside this locality, but I can say that this locality no longer exists.” He asserted that Ukrainian forces are determined to safeguard every corner of the nation, whether in Maryinka, Bakhmut, or Avdiivka, all areas that have witnessed intense combat in recent months. While Bakhmut fell to Russian control in May, prompting a Ukrainian counteroffensive, Avdiivka remains under Ukrainian command but has been subject to relentless attacks.


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