The Russian Ministry of Defence reports to have taken control over the city of Soledar, Donetsk region of Ukraine, on 12 January.
“The establishment of full control of Soledar allows to block the supply routes of Ukrainian forces in the city of Artyomovsk [Bakhmut], located to the southwest, as well as to block and to pocket the units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) that still remain there,” the ministry reports.
The Russian ministry also states that over 700 Ukrainian servicemen have been killed in Soledar within the last three days, while over 300 units of armament have been eliminated.
Furthermore, the ministry claims that “in Krasny Liman direction, artillery strikes launched by a formation of Airborne Troops from Pskov have resulted in the neutralisation of the units from 80th and 95th airborne assault brigades of the AFU” near the villages of Hryhorivka and Serebryanka located in the self-proclaimed Donetsk “people’s republic”.
The spokesperson for the Eastern Grouping of Ukraine’s Armed Forces Serhiy Cherevatyi told media outlet RBC-Ukraine that Russian troops had not captured Soledar. According to him, the fighting in the city continues.
The American Institute for the Study of War speculates in its latest bulletin that Russian forces have likely captured the city of Soledar, however, that will unlikely lead to the city of Bakhmut being encircled. The Institute writes that “Russian information operations have overexaggerated the importance of Soledar, which is at best a Russian Pyrrhic tactical victory”.