Kyiv (Times Of Ocean)- Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russia has launched an offensive to retake the eastern Donbas.
Moscow bombarded cities with rockets and artillery fire on Monday, and Zelensky stated in a video address that the battle for the Donbas has begun”.
Oleksiy Danilov, Ukraine’s top security official, said Russia tried to break through Ukrainian lines in the region.
After the Russians failed to seize Kiev, the offensive was long anticipated.
Initially, Russia seemed intent on capturing major Ukrainian cities and overthrowing the government.
However, after facing stiff resistance, Russian defense officials declared that its main objectives in the “first stage of the operation” had been “generally achieved” and that its forces had been mobilized from areas around the capital.
It was announced that the invasion would focus on liberating the Russian-speaking Donbas region.
Vladimir Putin has cast the invasion as an attempt to demilitarize and “denazify” Ukraine, which Ukraine and its allies dismiss as a ruse for an unprovoked attack.
On Monday, Russia unleashed a barrage of rocket and artillery fire on a number of eastern areas, killing at least eight civilians in the city of Kreminna and in the vicinity of Donetsk.
Four Russian strikes in Lviv, a western city that has largely escaped the attacks elsewhere in Ukraine, left seven people dead and 11 injured.