Strong new statements were made by President Wagner Yevgeny Prigozhin, commenting on statements by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Tuesday.
After the founder of the Wagner Group, considered the spearhead of the fighting on the fronts in the city of Bakhmut in Dsk, eastern Ukraine, revealed that the number of fighters of the Ukrainian forces in the city ranges from 12 to 20 thousand soldiers, and that fierce battles are currently taking place, he indicated he would not comment on Shoigu’s statements and his estimates of Ukrainian losses, adding, “I’ve never seen him in the field at Bakhmut,” indicating that Shoigu is only “watching.”
He also compared the battles in ran to Bakhmut to a “meat grinder”, stating in statements reported by his Telegram channel that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky throws and sends thousands of fighters in that meat grinder.
First kill the bear
Commenting on the next steps after the control of the city, he said: “It’s too early to talk about after Bakhmut,” citing the example of a famous Russian saying, “It’s first to kill the bear first, and then think about what we must do.” with his skin!”
He also considered that “the term mopping up and cleaning up used by the MoD with some 20,000 soldiers still in Bakhmut will not happen by morning.”
He added, again, making fun of the defense minister’s statements, saying: “Unless the cleaning is aimed at arranging the uniforms and sweeping the empty streets”.
Prigozhin’s comments come after Shoigu stressed earlier in the day that control of Bakhmut’s industrial region is the key to further offensive Russia in the Dsk region. “This city forms an important defense center for Ukrainian forces in the Donbass region,” he told a meeting of military officials televised on state television, “its control will allow for further attacks in deep within the lines of defense of the Ukrainian forces”.
He also confirmed that Ukrainian losses are heavy, amounting to nearly 11,000 dead in February.
Interestingly, disagreements between the controversial Peregozhin and the Russian defense have flared lately, especially after he accused the General Staff of preventing the supply of weapons to his forces which have been fighting fiercely for months in eastern Ukraine, and also accusing them of treason.
It has arrived in a delicate moment, especially since the Russians were in able to surround Bakhmut from 3 sides and have taken control of parts of the city, although Ukrainian forces are still stationed there, after Zelensky refused to withdraw in light of a unanimous decision. done with military leaders.
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