Ukraine says Russians bombard frontline positions with artillery

LVIV, Ukraine, Nov 20 (Reuters) – Russian forces are bombarding Ukrainian positions with artillery fire and in the eastern region alone launched nearly 400 strikes on Sunday, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said in a video address.

Russia withdrew its forces from the southern city of Kherson this month and moved some of them to reinforce positions in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, an industrial area known as Donbass.

“The fiercest battles, as before, are taking place in the Donetsk region. Although there were fewer attacks today due to deteriorating weather conditions, the number of Russian shelling unfortunately remains extremely high “, said Zelenskiy.

“In the Luhansk region, we are advancing slowly while fighting. To date, there have been nearly 400 artillery attacks in the east since the start of the day,” he continued.

Zelenskiy also said troops in the south were “constantly and very calculatedly destroying potential occupiers”, but gave no details.

Kyiv said on Saturday that about 60 Russian soldiers had been killed in a long-range artillery attack in the south, the second time in four days that Ukraine claims to have inflicted heavy casualties in a single incident.

Oleh Zhdanov, a military analyst based in Kyiv, said that according to his information, offensive battles were taking place on the front line of Bakhmut and Avdiivka in the Donetsk region, among others.

“The enemy is trying to break through our defenses, in vain,” Zhdanov said in a video on social media. “We are fighting back – they are suffering huge losses.”

He said both armies are focused on regrouping. Ukrainian forces are moved to Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk and Kharkiv, among others. Russian troops regroup in the direction of Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk and Lugansk.

The Russian Defense Ministry said on Sunday that up to 50 Ukrainian servicemen had been killed the day before along the southern front line in Donetsk and another 50 elsewhere. A total of 153 areas of concentration of Ukrainian manpower and military equipment were destroyed on Saturday.

Reuters was unable to immediately verify either the Ukrainian or Russian reports.

Russia calls its invasion of Ukraine a “special operation” to demilitarize and “denazify” its neighbor, not a war. Kyiv and its allies say the invasion is an unprovoked war of aggression.

Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of Zelenskiy’s administration, said on Sunday evening that Russian forces fired on a residential building in the Kherson region of southern Ukraine.

“There may be people under the rubble. Emergency services are working at the scene,” Tymoshenko said on the Telegram messaging app.

The recently recaptured capital of the region, the City of Khersonremains without electricity, running water or heating.

Additional reporting in Ottawa by David Ljunggren and in Melbourne by Lidia Kelly; Written by David Ljunggren and Lidia Kelly; Editing by Sandra Maler and Diane Craft

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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