Russian Forces Claim Victory in Avdiivka, Ukraine as Ukrainian Troops Retreat along Frozen Frontline

Russian military authorities assert they have nearly complete control over Avdiivka in eastern Ukraine. Following a challenging and prolonged battle, Ukrainian soldiers fell back several kilometers along a frozen front line.

Following Russia's recent significant military success, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy passionately called for increased international assistance over the weekend. At the same time, Russian President Vladimir Putin extended his congratulations to the soldiers.

As per the Associated Press, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu mentioned that Russian soldiers were still encountering minimal opposition within the city's large Soviet-era chemical facility. Images circulating on social media on Saturday depicted soldiers hoisting the Russian flag above an industrial site.

Following a prolonged effort to defend the town, Ukrainian commanders decided to retreat in order to protect their remaining soldiers from Russian attacks. According to a statement from the Kremlin on Sunday, Russian troops have moved forward five miles following the capture of the city.

Mr. Zelenskyy spoke to Vice President Kamala Harris and other foreign delegates at the Munich Security Conference over the weekend. According to him, Russia was exploiting the lack of armaments faced by Ukraine's troops, who were outnumbered and outgunned, as a result of Western uncertainty and diminishing support.

Zelenskyy noted that our strength and range are the only factors that can hinder us from reaching our goals. This incident in Avdiivka serves as confirmation."

President Zelenskyy and Vice President Biden had a phone conversation on Saturday. Despite the Republicans' control of the House, the vice president expressed confidence that Congress would approve a $60 billion military assistance proposal for Kyiv.

Mr. Biden cautioned that the aid might not reach Ukraine in time to prevent further territorial losses in the ongoing conflict. Due to Congress's delay, the White House received Zelenskyy's Saturday call stating that the Ukrainian military "had to reduce munitions owing to diminishing supplies."

In February 2022, at the beginning of the invasion, the Kremlin faced several military setbacks that shattered their hopes of a quick victory. The Kremlin promptly praised the achievement, as military analysts suggest that Russian troops have regrouped and regained the advantage on the extensive eastern and southern Ukraine front line.

According to Putin's spokesman, senior authorities notified him of the city's collapse at 4 a.m. on Sunday and then again seven hours later.

Dmitry Peskov informed Moscow reporters that the enemy began to retreat from Avdiivka and abandoned their positions. Our troops had to delay their operations to clear the city.

The Ukrainian military successfully defended against Russia's attack on the disputed Zaporizhzhia region and eliminated three Russian tanks. Verification of war claims from both sides, including those from Kyiv, proved to be challenging.

According to the Institute for the Study of War in Washington, D.C., reports from both sides suggest that Ukraine's military forces are lacking weaponry, air defense, and other supplies.

The think tank reported that Russian forces appeared to have gained temporary control of the air and offered close air support to ground troops during the final stages of their operation to capture Avdiivka on Saturday. The Russian military might be engaging in Ukraine for the first time.

Due to the limited number of operational air defense systems and a scarcity of air defense missiles, Ukrainian officials may face difficult decisions regarding where to prioritize air defense coverage along the front line. Russia is persistently targeting populated areas with missiles and drones.

Kyiv dedicated a significant number of soldiers and resources to maintaining control over Avdiivka, a city with a population of 30,000 before the conflict and located just a few kilometers from Donetsk, the provincial seat occupied by Russia. The city now plays a vital role as a logistical hub for Russia's military operations.

Last week, the Washington, D.C., House of Representatives was on break until February 28. It is unclear what will happen with the Ukrainian aid plan. House Speaker Mike Johnson is feeling inundated and uncertain about his next steps.

Former GOP Rep. Liz Cheney, who lost her Wyoming House seat for criticizing former President Trump, stated that Mr. Johnson should receive the money for Kyiv even if it means the Louisiana speaker loses his job after four months.

"It is important for him to understand that it may be necessary to give up his speakership in order to safeguard freedom and maintain the U.S.'s position as a global leader," Ms. Cheney stated during an interview on CNN's "State of the Union".


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