President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has made a firm commitment to hold onto Bakhmut, despite the encroaching Russian forces that have been attempting to capture the devastated eastern city for months. Previously, an adviser to the president had suggested the possibility of retreating from Bakhmut to nearby positions, but this idea was rejected by top military brass in a meeting chaired by Mr Zelenskyy yesterday.

 

During the meeting, military leaders expressed their support for continuing the defense operation and strengthening Ukrainian positions in Bakhmut, according to a statement from the president's office. In his nightly video address, Mr Zelenskyy announced that his advisers had unanimously agreed to press on with the fight, refusing to retreat and instead bolstering Ukrainian defenses.

 

Mr Zelenskyy's top adviser, Mykhailo Podolyak, emphasized that the military has reached a consensus on the need to continue defending the city and grinding down enemy forces while building new lines of defense, adding that Ukraine has already exhausted Russia's main combat-ready groups and trained tens of thousands of Ukrainian military personnel in preparation for a possible counteroffensive.