Oleksandr Shtupun, spokesman for Ukraine’s Tavria Operational Strategic Grouping of Forces, denied Russian claims of capturing the city of Mariinka in the Donetsk Oblast during a telethon on 25 December.
Marinka was a city west of occupied Donetsk, which the Russian troops have been trying to seize for many months. Currently, most of Marinka has been reduced to rubble by the Russian artillery and air attacks.
“The battles for Marinka continue. Currently, our soildiers are in the administrative borders of Mariinka. However, the city is completely destroyed. But to talk about the full capture of Mariinka is incorrect,” Shtupun said.
This statement comes in response to earlier Russian media reports claiming that Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu informed President Vladimir Putin about the Russian military’s capture of Marinka.
Ukrainian forces continued to hold back the Russian troops near Novomykhailivka in the Mariinka direction, where the Russian military carried out three attacks, Ukraine’s General Staff reported in its evening frontline update on 25 December.