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Ukrainian Military Chief Announces Withdrawal From Avdeyevka

The Ukrainian Armed Forces have thrown in the towel in Avdeyevka, just outside Donetsk, and announced their withdrawal from the town. Ukrainian commander-in-chief Col. Gen. Oleksandr Syrskyi said he had made the decision to avoid encirclement and “preserve the lives and health of servicemen,” reported the Associated Press. Syrski added that troops were moving to “more favorable lines.”

“Our soldiers performed their military duty with dignity, did everything possible to destroy the best Russian military units, inflicted significant losses on the enemy in terms of manpower and equipment,” he added in a statement. “We are taking measures to stabilize the situation and maintain our positions.”

While the liberation of Avdeyevka will likely have as one of its effects the pushing back of Ukrainian artillery from Donetsk city, the shelling of civilian areas hasn’t yet stopped. Donetsk People’s Republic leader Denis Pushilin reported this morning that four people were killed and six were wounded by Ukrainian shelling of Panteleymonovka, about 17 km to the northeast of Avdeyevka.