Ukrainian forces are closing in to recapture the city of Lyman in the eastern Donetsk region of the country, the Defense Ministry in Kyiv said on Saturday.
“Ukrainian Air Assault Forces are entering Lyman, Donetsk region. [The Ukrainian army] has and will always have the decisive vote in today’s and any future ‘referendums’,” the ministry said on Twitter, posting a video of what appear to be Ukrainian soldiers raising their country’s flag at the outskirts of the city.
The BBC reported that Russian military commentators were posting on Telegram channels on Saturday afternoon that the Ukrainian army has “already captured or, at a minimum, entered Lyman.”
Serhii Cherevatyi, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s eastern forces, said the city was of strategic importance.
“Lyman is important because it is the next step towards the liberation of the Ukrainian Donbas. It is an opportunity to go further to Kreminna and Sievierodonetsk, and it is psychologically very important,” Reuters quoted him as saying.
Lyman is located in the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine, which is one of four areas that Moscow declares part of its territory following referendums that many Western countries have declared a “sham.”