On Thursday, the Ukrainian army announced that Russian forces had withdrawn from the town of Nova Kahovka, on the other side of the Dnieper, in the Kherson region, in the south of Ukraine, but soon announced that it had made a mistake, and the withdrawal was denied by Moscow.
– The occupier is still temporarily in Nova Kahovka. The information about the alleged withdrawal of the enemy from that position was published after a misinterpretation of the available data – wrote the main military staff on Telegram.
At first, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense announced that on March 22, 2023 (Wednesday), all units of the occupying army at the position in Nova Kahovka, Kherson Oblast, left the city, but soon the Ukrainian army admitted that it was wrong because it did not properly study the information received.
Nova Kahovka is located northeast of Kherson, the city from which the Russians withdrew in November 2022 and moved to the other side of the Dnieper River.
The city is close to the Kahovka hydroelectric power plant, which was captured by the Russians at the beginning of the offensive against Ukraine at the end of February 2022.
On Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky toured the frontline in the Kherson region, which was partially occupied by Russia in September 2022, and declared its annexation to its territory.
The Russian occupier denied any information about the withdrawal from the city near Kherson.
– I officially claim that all Russian military personnel in Nova Kahovka, as well as in other places on the left bank of the Dnieper, are at their positions – Vladimir Soldo, a local pro-Russian leader, said on Telegram.
Zelenski also visited the power plant damaged in the wave of Russian attacks on power plants along the river.
Zelensky also addressed the European leaders at the summit in Brussels via video link from the train, urging them to deliver long-range missiles and fighter jets to Ukraine.
He also called for new sanctions against Russia and for speeding up steps in the process of Ukraine’s admission to the European Union, said one European leader.
On Thursday, the leaders of the EU member states supported the decision to urgently send one million pieces of artillery ammunition to Ukraine through joint procurement, and Zelenskiy urged them to hurry up the delivery.
For months, the bulk of the fighting has been taking place on the eastern front, especially around Bahmut, a city that is suffering unimaginable destruction and massive human losses on both sides.
Despite slow progress, Russian forces fail to capture the city in the face of strong Ukrainian resistance.
The aggressor wants to “take Bakhmut at any cost, despite losses in manpower and equipment,” Ukrainian ground forces commander Oleksandr Syrskyi said on Telegram on Thursday.
Russian troops massively mobilized around Bakhmut are “losing significant strength and becoming exhausted,” he said, then added, “We will take advantage of this opportunity very quickly, as we have done in the past near Kiev, Kharkiv, Balaklia and Kupyansk,” citing previous Ukrainian military victories .
Zelensky toured the area around Bakhmut on Wednesday and near Kherson on Thursday after Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to Moscow, where he and his host, Russian President Vladimir Putin, sent the world an image of unity against Western countries.
Putin wisely supported China’s peace plan to end the war in Ukraine, but Kiev was accused of rejecting it.
According to media information, Xi Jinping could now talk to Volodymyr Zelensky by phone, which would be the first such conversation since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which Beijing neither publicly condemned nor openly supported.