- Sputnik International, 1920, 25.02.2022
Russia's Special Operation in Ukraine
On February 24, 2022 Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine, aiming to liberate the Donbass region where the people's republics of Donetsk and Lugansk had been living under regular attacks from Kiev's forces.

Up to 1,000 Ukrainian Troops Believed to Be Captured in Retreat From Avdeyevka - Reports

© AP Photo / Mstyslav ChernovA Ukrainian serviceman smokes in a shelter at a position at the line of separation.
A Ukrainian serviceman smokes in a shelter at a position at the line of separation. - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.02.2024
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Between 850 and 1,000 Ukrainian soldiers appear to have been captured or are unaccounted for during the Ukrainian retreat from Avdeyevka, a former Ukrainian stronghold north of the city of Donetsk, The New York Times reported on Tuesday, citing two Ukrainian soldiers.
The newspaper cited senior Western officials and soldiers fighting in Ukraine as saying that the retreat of Ukrainian troops from Avdeyevka is a devastating loss that could deal a blow to already weakening morale and may be more significant than it initially seemed.
The report also cited officials as saying that the Ukrainian withdrawal was ill-planned and began too late, but American officials told the newspaper that the loss of Avdeyevka was not a significant strategic setback.
A Russian soldier in the streets of Avdeyevka - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.02.2024
How Avdeyevka Was Liberated and What Comes Next
However, the report said, American officials believe that morale among Ukrainian soldiers was already eroding against the background of a failed counteroffensive in 2023 and the removal of Ukrainian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi, which may further complicate Kiev's efforts to recruit soldiers.
On Saturday, Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi announced the decision to withdraw troops from Avdeyevka, a northern suburb of Donetsk. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that the decision to pull out the troops had been made to "save people's lives." Later, the Russian Defense Ministry said that the Russian military had taken full control of the city of Avdeyevka.
Russian troops exploring Avdeyevka - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.02.2024
Russian Forces Captured Avdeyevka With Minimal Losses - Shoigu
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