Friday, December 2

Russia suffers its second major defeat in a month after the annexation of the Ukrainian regions

The Russian Army has suffered this Saturday its second major defeat in eastern Ukraine in less than a month after withdrawing from the pro-Russian stronghold of Limán, in the Donetsk region, and just 24 hours after annexing that and three other regions in the east and south of the neighboring country. “Due to the risk of being surrounded, the allied forces have been withdrawn from the town of Limán to more advantageous positions,” Igor Konashénkov, spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, reported on Saturday.

Defeat is hard to swallow, as Russian President Vladimir Putin promised Russians on Friday both in the Kremlin and in Red Square that would guarantee the security of the new territories with “all the forces and means”, in what he called “the liberating mission”. In addition, this withdrawal takes place after the withdrawal three weeks ago from the neighboring Kharkov region, a humiliation that forced Putin to decree the partial mobilization, very unpopular among the Russians.

In fact, according to the press, the first battalions with reservists are already on the ground, although their presence has hardly been noticed. The Ukrainians had Limán between eyebrows and eyebrows since they recovered the Kharkov region, since it is an important railway junction.

Before signing the annexation treaty in the Kremlin on Friday, the leader of the self-proclaimed people’s republic of Donetsk, Denís Pushilin, has already acknowledged that he had received “alarming news” from Limán, where his troops were nearly surrounded. Since last night the Russians tried to “unblock” the city with intense bombardments, to which the American Institute for the Study of War gave 72 hours.

skewed parts

As happened with Kharkov, the Russian military part today took refuge in the fact that the Ukrainian units had superiority in both men and equipment. Defense also argued that Russian artillery had caused heavy casualties among the Ukrainian 66th and 93rd Mechanized Brigades, as well as destroying tanks and other military vehicles. And he admitted that, “despite the losses suffered, having superiority in forces and resources, the enemy introduced reinforcements and continued its offensive in that direction.”

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According to kyiv, some 5,000 men were in Limán, although neither Moscow nor the pro-Russians have specified any figure. The Liman knot leads both to the irreducible Ukrainian strongholds in Donetsk -Kramatorsk and Lugansk- and to the pro-Russian zone in neighboring Lugansk.

The unstoppable Ukrainian advance, added to the fact that the front line that the Russians must protect is more than a thousand kilometers long, has put the capabilities of the Russian Army in serious trouble. Although the pro-Russians claim to control the road that leads to Kremina, already in the Lugansk region, kyiv also recovered five towns in the vicinity of Limán.

The defeats on the battlefield make the Kremlin’s work even more difficult, since, after reviewing its borders for the second time in its history, it does not fully control the geography of the four annexed regions.

What exactly has the Kremlin annexed?

Hours before the signing of the annexation treaties, the presidential spokesman, Dmitri Peskov, announced at a press conference that the issue of the exact limits of the annexation would be clarified on Friday.

He broke his word. Twenty-four hours later, the Russians still don’t know exactly what Russia has annexed, other than the vague notion of eastern and southern Ukraine. The outlines of Donetsk and Luhansk are not in doubt on paper, although the Army controls little more than half of the first of these people’s republics.

The problem lies in Kherson and Zaporizhia, which make up what is known as the land corridor to Crimea. To this day, we do not know if Putin will settle for the parts of both southern regions currently under the control of the Russian Army or if he will want to reach the administrative border.

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Putin is expected to clarify this once the Constitutional Court and both chambers of Parliament give the go-ahead for the incorporation of the new territories. The mobilization has also run aground as soon as it started. Putin has had to postpone the call-up of recruits for a month due to the saturation in the recruitment offices, as the Kremlin acknowledged on Saturday.

The Russian president called up 120,000 people between the ages of 18 and 27, who will begin their compulsory service on November 1 instead of October 1, as is tradition. Putin, whose approval has dropped several points due to his mobilization decree, this week admitted mistakes on the part of the military and ordered those Russians summoned by mistake to return home immediately. At the same time, he issued a decree simplifying the granting of citizenship to foreigners serving in the Army, although many countries in the post-Soviet space have banned their citizens from fighting in Ukraine.

Some Russian regions are also considering legalizing the sending of prisoners to the front, which would reduce their sentence by ten days for each day they serve in the ranks of the Army.

To prevent attacks on enlistment offices, the authorities threaten those who try to burn down these centers with Molotov cocktails with 15 years in prison.

nuclear weapons petition

In addition, the leader of the Russian republic of ChechnyaRamzan Kadyrov, has asked the Russian Army this Saturday to use “low-power nuclear weapons” in Ukraine, where Moscow’s troops have difficulties in some areas. “In my opinion, more drastic measures must be taken, up to the declaration of martial law in the border areas and the use of low-power nuclear weapons,” Kadyrov said in a message on Telegram in which he condemned “nepotism” within of the Russian Army.

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On the other hand, the Ukrainian Government has denounced a new Russian attack against a humanitarian evacuation convoy in the town of Kupiansk, Kharkov region (in the northeast of the country), which has resulted in at least 26 dead and 81 wounded. The Zaporizhia Police has reported this new balance, according to the Interfax Ukraine news agency. Among the deceased there are two minors and a soldier who was on duty at a roadblock and was affected by shrapnel. In addition, there are 81 injured who have been transferred to health centers, including a three-year-old girl. The Ukrainian governor of the region, Oleg Sinegubov, has assured that “Russian occupiers attacked civilians who were trying to escape the bombing.” This is a brutality that has no justification “, he has made known on his Telegram channel. There are now law enforcement officers and experts who have begun to investigate the exact scope of the bombardment denounced by Ukraine.

Up to three projectiles from an S-300 anti-aircraft battery hit the checkpoint at 7:10 am where a convoy of civilians was waiting to leave the region, according to the Ukrainian press. This complaint takes place 24 hours after Ukraine and Russia got involved in a crossroads of accusations about an attack on a “humanitarian convoy” in the Zaporizhia region that has left at least 30 dead and 118 wounded, according to the latest balance given to meet this Saturday by the mayor of Melitopol, Ivan Fedorov. Kupiansk was initially liberated by Ukrainian forces early last month during their major offensive in the east of the country, although it was still the scene of fighting.

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