2,000 Ukrainian troops besieged in Luhansk, says Russia


Some 2,000 Ukrainian troops are besieged in the country’s Luhansk region, Russia’s Defense Ministry said Friday. 

The troops, including servicemen, mercenaries and fighters of the far-right group Right Sector, are stranded between the Zolote and Hirske settlements, said Igor Konashenkov, the Defense Ministry spokesman, at a press briefing in Moscow.

Over the past day, 41 soldiers surrendered as communication with the higher command cut off along with other supplies, the spokesman said.

The Ukrainian troops were also laying down their arms in other parts of the country, said Konashenkov, adding that the Ukrainian military chiefs were now recruiting untrained, conscripted citizens.

Giving details of targets hit, he said Russian jets destroyed military equipment at 367 spots, five ammunition depots, and several artillery and mortar units.

Also, an S-300 air defense system near Odesa was struck with missiles, he added.

“In total, since the beginning of the special military operation, 213 aircraft, 132 helicopters, 1,334 unmanned aerial vehicles, 350 air defense systems, 3,769 tanks and other armored combat vehicles, 659 multiple rocket launcher combat vehicles, 3,002 field artillery and mortar guns, as well as 3,835 units of special military vehicles have been destroyed,” he said.

More than 4,634 civilians have been killed in Ukraine since the war started on Feb. 24, according to the UN.

Over 14 million people have been forced to flee their homes, including more than 8 million that have fled to other countries, according to UN figures.

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