Dec 10, 2022 - World

Ukrainian city of Bakhmut now in "ruins" after Russian attack: Zelensky

Buildings damaged by shelling are seen in downtown of Bakhmut City, Ukraine.

Buildings damaged by shelling are seen in downtown of Bakhmut city, Ukraine. Photo: Narciso Contreras/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his nightly video address that Russian forces "destroyed" the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, leaving it in "burnt ruins," the Associated Press reports.

Why it matters: The destruction of Bakhmut, which is located in the Donbas region, comes as the war between Russia and Ukraine has focused on four regions annexed by Russia in September.

Driving the news: Zelensky said in a video address Friday night that the cities of Bakhmut, Soledar, Maryinka and Kreminna are currently in the middle of the fight with Russia, AP reports.

  • "For a long time, there is no living place left on the land of these areas that have not been damaged by shells and fire," he said. “The occupiers actually destroyed Bakhmut, another Donbas city that the Russian army turned into burnt ruins.”
  • Zelensky did not explain what "destroyed" meant.
  • The city still has some standing buildings and civilians on the streets but has spent weeks without water and power.

Zoom out: Bakhmut's destruction comes as Russia looks to control its annexed regions (Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk) and Ukraine aims to reclaim them, the Guardian reports.

  • Those provinces make up the Donbas industrial region, which Russian President Vladimir Putin has deemed a focus of the war.
  • The Ukrainian president said the situation “remains very difficult," per AP.

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