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Ukraine announces capture of Russian commander in Bakhmut

Ukrainian Ground Forces announced Monday that their troops successfully captured a Russian army commander in the ongoing fight for the city of Bakhmut.

The 3rd Separate Assault Brigade posted on its Telegram channel that its fighters nabbed the leader of the Russian Alga Volunteer Battalion, a branch of Moscow’s 72nd Motor Rifle Brigade. The commander’s name was not released.

The reported capture, which could not be independently confirmed by Newsweek, comes as Kyiv has seen continued incremental gains in its counteroffensive aimed at reclaiming Russian-occupied territory. Newsweek reached out to the Russian Defense Ministry via email for comment Monday afternoon.

In a video attached to the Telegram post, which purportedly shows the moment the Russian commander was captured, Ukrainian soldiers can be seen moving the wounded official into a tattered building for shelter and providing him with water. The commander, according to translations provided by the account War Translated on X, formerly Twitter, tells Kyiv’s forces that he entered the region in the morning with about 120 men.

“There’s a f*** load of people who died here,” the Russian commander said when asked about the state of his battalion.

Bakhmut, an industrial city in eastern Ukraine, has been under Russian control since May following months of brutal warfare. Over the past five months since launching its counteroffensive, however, Kyiv has been slowly closing in on Russian forces in the region, including reclaiming a string of key villages south of the city last month.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported on Sunday that its troops had “partial success” in advancing northeast of Andriivka, a key village roughly six miles south of Bakhmut that Kyiv reclaimed in mid-September. Kyiv also reported that Russia’s advances in the area were unsuccessful.

Last week, Colonel General Oleksandry Syrskyi, commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, reported that the Russian military had suffered intense losses in the battle for Bakhmut, including six tanks in 24 hours.

Ukraine’s 3rd Assault Brigade added in its Telegram post that the commander was now “one of the representatives of the exchange fund among the senior officers of the occupiers.” In August, Ukrainian intelligence spokesperson Andriy Yusov told reporters that the number of Russian prisoners of war in Kyiv’s possession had surpassed 200, according to Interfax-Ukraine.

“This means that it will be easier and more active to bring back our people,” Yusov added at the briefing.

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