Russia: Putin claims capture of Bakhmut as Ukraine insists battle not over
Vladimir Putin has hailed his first major victory since the early days of the invasion of Ukraine, claiming Russian forces had captured the eastern city of Bakhmut despite Kyiv insisting the battle “was not over”.
Russia’s president said the paramilitary group Wagner had seized the Ukrainian city with help from Russia’s armed forces after a bloody, months-long battle that claimed more than 100,000 casualties and reduced the city to ruins.
“All who distinguished themselves will be put forward for state awards,” the Kremlin said in a statement released overnight on Sunday.
But Russia’s claims that the city had fallen were flatly denied by Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Ukraine’s president. “Bakhmut is not occupied by the Russian Federation as of today,” he said, speaking at the G7 summit of advanced economies in Japan.