Following a meeting with the Ukrainian military, President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Jan. 12 that "particular attention" was paid to the battles for Bakhmut and Soledar in the eastern Donetsk Oblast.
"I emphasize that the units defending these cities are provided with ammunition and everything necessary promptly and uninterruptedly," Zelensky said, adding that the Armed Forces are reinforced with equipment and weapons supplied to Ukraine by the West.
Earlier in the day, Ukraine's Special Operations Forces reported that over a hundred Russian soldiers had been killed in the battle of Soledar after Ukrainian forces launched a missile strike.
Serhii Cherevatyi, a spokesman for Ukraine's Eastern Military Command, on Jan. 11, denied Russian claims that the town of Soledar in Donetsk Oblast was "under Russian control."
Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Jan. 11, neither confirmed nor denied earlier reports that Moscow troops had captured Soledar, saying that the public should wait for official announcements.
The country's Defense Ministry alleged on Jan. 11 that Russian paratroopers had blocked Soledar from the north and south.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of Kremlin-controlled mercenary group Wagner Group, claimed on Jan. 10 that the group had captured the whole of Soledar and encircled Ukrainian forces in the center of the town.
On Jan. 10, the U.K. Defense Ministry said that Russian troops, together with Wagner Group mercenaries, had likely occupied most of Soledar over the past four days.
Soledar is located about 10 kilometers from Bakhmut. Russian troops are seeking to encircle Bakhmut by capturing Soledar.