Russian forces have likely taken most of the town of Lyman, the British Ministry of Defense (MoD) said in today’s intelligence update.
This, it added, could be a preparatory operation for the next phase of the Donbas offensive in Moscow.
In its latest assessment, the Department of Defense said Lyman was a strategically important rail junction and access point to major rail and road bridges spanning the Siverskyy Donets River.
The report read: “In the coming days, Russian units in the area are likely to give priority to forcing a crossing of the river.
“For now, Russia’s main effort will probably remain 40km to the east, around the Sieverodonetsk pocket, but a bridgehead at Lyman would give Russia an advantage in the possible next phase of the Donbas offensive, when it is likely to attempt to advance.” on key Ukrainian-occupied areas. cities deeper in Donetsk Oblast, Sloviansk and Kramatorsk.”
Denis Pushilin, leader of the breakaway Donetsk People’s Republic, told Russian state media on Thursday that if Russia conquered all of Donetsk and Luhansk, a referendum would be held.
He also said authorities had introduced the Russian ruble and were in the process of introducing a new tax system in Kherson and Zaporizhzhya.