Ukrainian forces have recaptured 12 settlements in Luhansk since initiating a counteroffensive in September, the top Ukrainian official for the eastern region said Monday.
“The advance is not easy,” said Serhiy Hayday, head of the Luhansk regional military administration, on national television. “Every meter passed in the Luhansk region is a continuous struggle for the AFU [Armed Forces of Ukraine].”
The Ukrainian military began a slow probe into the Luhansk region in September, after a rapid advance in the neighboring Kharkiv region.
The village of Makiivka was liberated Sunday, according to the military administration, and Ukrainian forces have in recent weeks been pushing towards the road connecting Svatove and Kreminna. For several weeks, they have said that the road is under their "fire control," meaning that the Russian military can only use it with a high risk of coming under fire.
“There is heavy fighting in Luhansk region every day,” Hayday said. “The recently de-occupied settlements are being heavily shelled.”
“The occupiers know exactly where they are firing, as they were knocked out of these settlements a few days ago and they know how many civilians are there and where they are. That is why we are trying to establish evacuation.”