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Putin and Shoigu Meet To Review Russia’s Victory at Avdeyevka

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Defense Secretary Sergey Shoigu met Feb. 20 to review Ukraine’s route at Avdeyevka by Russian forces. The two men talk frequently in private, but this meeting was made public on the Kremlin site, with a picture of them poring over a map, to underscore the importance of the development. Russia is clearly feeling its oats after Ukraine’s disorderly retreat from Avdeyevka.

Putin said to Shoigu that Ukraine was trying “to cover up a retreat and make it look like an organized withdrawal. We saw it and we know that this wasn’t the case, that these troops were actually fleeing.” Shoigu confirmed that “as the enemy retreated, they left behind many wounded soldiers who became our POWs because they simply were unable to move. A lot of weapons were left behind as well, a lot of firearms, many ATGMs and MANPADs. All of that is being collected. A sweeping de-mining effort is underway.” Shoigu added that it had taken Ukraine nine years to build the fortified area which had been retaken, and it was one of the key locations from which the Kiev regime had shelled the city of Donetsk.

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