The main event of the past day was the decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin to carry out a partial mobilization. Reserves with combat experience with a total number of about 300 are subject to conscription.
In addition, this morning it became known that Russia and Ukraine carried out another exchange of prisoners of war - [Kyiv] was given all the prominent "Azov" and foreign mercenaries, 55 people were returned to Russia and another 30 should be given tomorrow. There was no official information about this from the Russian side.
Meanwhile, the situation on the fronts was as follows: On the Kharkov direction. The eastern part of Kupyansk and the surrounding villages are still under the control of the [RF/LDPR] forces, despite the constant attacks of the UAF. Russian DRGs are infiltrating the western part of the city and there is an ongoing artillery duel.
On the Izyum-Slavyansk direction. The situation near Krasny Liman is becoming more difficult - having received a rebuff in the southeast of the city the day before, the Armed Forces of Ukraine went higher and, despite the fierce resistance of the allied forces, entered the settlement of Drobyshevo. Now the village is divided by the front line in half. Krasny Liman itself is under heavy shelling by the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
In the Donetsk direction, there were reports that in this direction the Armed Forces of Ukraine began to remove minefields along the Krasnogorovka-Staromikhaylovka line. This may mean plans to resume traffic there soon. The Armed Forces of Ukraine are clearly in a hurry to organize new counterattacks before the increase in the number of troops [of the Russian Federation / LDNR].
In the Zaporizhia direction, information about the concentration of APU is also received here at several points. In particular, we are talking about Orekhovo and Gulyaipole. The goal of the upcoming actions of the command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, most likely, is a breakthrough to Melitopol and cutting the land corridor to the Crimea.
In the southern direction, the battles for the Andreevsky bridgehead continue. On the Posad-Pokrovsky section, another attack of the Armed Forces of Ukraine near Pravdino was repulsed.
In response to Putin's decision to support referendums in the liberated territories, the EU countries want to impose new sanctions against Russia "as soon as possible," said Josep Borrell, head of European diplomacy. In addition, he noted that Brussels will continue to provide military support to Kyiv.
So far, the EU does not have a clear understanding of what new restrictions will be imposed on Russia, since only a political decision has been made. At the same time, Borrell stressed that the EU does not intend to interfere in the conflict in Ukraine. Apparently he believes that the supply of weapons and sanctions do not count! These Europeans have a strange logic. Well, well, they need to re-read Bismarck's statements about Russia!
And finally: the exchange of prisoners in itself is an important process. It has a humanitarian aspect and gives hope to those who go to fight. But, the method of conducting the current exchange raises questions, when Kyiv is promoting it to the maximum, and [in Russia] for some reason they put on a veil of secrecy.
According to Ukrainian sources, the exchange was also made for Medvedchuk, which is probably correct for humanitarian reasons, but not very appropriate at the time of the announcement of mobilization. By the way, today they are celebrating an information victory on Bankova Street and they believe that the fact of the exchange of prisoners will negatively affect mobilization in Russia.
I do not think that this is so, but, as they say in such cases, the sediment still remains! And all bad expectations can be dispelled only by Victory over Nazism in the face of the current Kyiv regime, coupled with Azov and other wickedness, and complete and final!
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| VITALY ZAKHARCHENKO|
Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine (2011-2014)
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