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UPDATED: Third Assault Brigade denies Andriivka near Bakhmut was liberated

by Dinara Khalilova September 14, 2023 4:31 PM 2 min read
Ukrainian soldiers adjust a national flag atop a personnel armored carrier on a road near Lyman, Donetsk Oblast, on Oct. 4, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo credit: Anatolii Stepanov / AFP) (Photo by ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP via Getty Images)
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The editor's note: The first version of this news story said that the village of Andriivka was liberated, according to Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar. It was updated after Ukraine's Third Assault Brigade issued a statement refuting Maliar's claim. Maliar later edited her statement.

Ukraine's Third Assault Brigade, fighting around Bakhmut, denied an earlier report by Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar that the village of Andriivka, Donetsk Oblast, had been liberated.

"The statement about the liberation of Andriivka is false and premature. Currently, serious and heavy fighting continues in Klishchiivka and Andriivka," the brigade reported.

"Such statements are harmful, threaten the lives of personnel, and harm the performance of combat missions."

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At around 2 p.m. local time on Sept. 14, Maliar wrote on Telegram that Ukrainian forces had liberated Andriivka, around 10 kilometers south of Bakhmut. However, after the Third Assault Brigade refuted the claim, the part of the text about the liberation was deleted from the post.

Instead, Maliar said that the situation in Andriivka was "very complex and changeable."

Even later, Maliar claimed there had been "miscommunication between several sources reporting directly from the scene."

"I do not release such information without coordination and agreement with the military," she said. The official added that Ukrainian forces had achieved some success in Andriivka, but fighting over the settlement was still ongoing.

On the same day, Presidential Office head Andriy Yermak announced "good news from the front lines" but didn't provide any further details.

Andriivka is located between Donetsk Oblast’s settlements of Kurdiumivka and Klishchiivka, where the fighting is currently concentrated, according to Maliar.

Russian forces are reportedly trying to recapture the lost positions on Bakhmut’s northern flank, while Ukraine’s military is advancing on the southern flank.

On Sept. 11, Maliar said that Ukrainian troops had regained about 50 square kilometers of land around the eastern city of Bakhmut since the start of the summer counteroffensive.

Ukraine’s counteroffensive has been ongoing for over three months in Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.

As counteroffensive presses forward in southeast, ‘every meter costs a life’
Editor’s note: The Kyiv Independent is not disclosing the soldiers interviewed in the story by their full names due to security concerns amid the ongoing war in Ukraine. The article also contains photos that some readers may find disturbing. DONETSK OBLAST – Twenty-nine-year-old assault company com…
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