Kherson residents evacuate

While Battle in Kherson Rages, Zelensky Pledges to Liberate Crimea

Moscow is reportedly preparing its armed forces for the Ukrainian counteroffensive it has been rumored recently in the occupied city of Kherson where the local authorities are allegedly pressuring civilians to leave for Russian-occupied territory.

Heavy fighting is taking place in the Luhansk region’s Kreminna and Svatove districts, a Russian-backed separatist official says, where Putin announced martial law after the illegal annexation. According to the official, the two districts have been at the frontline since Kyiv’s troops began in September its counteroffensive which routed Russian forces from the Kharkiv region.

According to Oleksiy Arestovych, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s office, Ukrainian forces are aware that the heaviest of battles for Kherson is ahead, noting it’s difficult to talk about the prospects for its liberation.

Noting that Russians have put an inhuman effort to strengthen their grouping, Arestovych also accused Moscow of “intimidating” Kherson’s residents, adding that Russia-installed authorities are making life increasingly difficult for civilians that remain in the city despite the warnings of an impending Ukrainian attempt to retake the regional capital.

However, the situation on the field didn’t stop Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky from vowing on Tuesday that Ukraine will definitely liberate Crimea and retake this part of its territory that Russia officially annexed in 2014, years prior to its ongoing invasion.

Zelensky made his claims while addressing virtually parliamentary leaders that convened at the so-called Crimea Platform initiative in Croatia to coordinate the international response to Russia’s occupation in the region.

Despite the independence referendum being held on the peninsula with the majority of votes going for joining the Russian Federation, most of the international community does not recognize Moscow’s claims in Crimea.

While aware that it will not be easy to reintegrate Crimea with Ukraine, Zelensky pointed out that they’re getting closer every day, stressing that returning Crimea to Ukraine would mean a return to the normality familiar to the whole of Europe.