The Ukrainian Armed Forces General Staff have just announced that Russian Ground Forces have made significant gains in settlements South of Lysychansk, across the Donets River. These settlements are being guarded by beleaguered Ukrainian BTGs, some comprised of reservist and International Legion personnel rushed to the front. While there has not been a major thrust South from Bilohorivka, this hammer and anvil pincer movement puts extreme risk on the approximately 10,000 Ukrainian troops in the Severodonetsk/Lysychansk pocket.
They announced that Russian troops have seized Myrna Dolyna and Pidlisne as well as began assaulting Bill Hora, but failed.
The pocket is already 75% closed by Russian forces. The decision to hold onto Sievierodonetsk and engage in city fighting is acknowledged by Ukrainian commanders as being risky. Due to the risk of Russian encirclement. Former Ukrainian defence minister Andriy Zagorodnyuk said: “Right now, the main objective is to use the window of opportunity that we have to completely exhaust the Russians in the Donbas. If we would move, they would move. We would have to meet them somewhere. It’s not like Putin wanted just Sievierodonetsk. They will keep going until they are stopped.”