KUPIANSK, KHARKIV OBLAST, Dec 10 — Ukrainian defence forces managed to eliminate 109 Russian soldiers in the Lyman-Kupiansk sector and destroy 17 pieces of military equipment, including a tank and an infantry fighting vehicle, said Volodymyr Fitio, head of the public relations service of the Ground Forces Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, during the United News telethon.

Ukrainian troops repelled seven Russian attacks in the Kupiansk sector in the areas of Synkivka, Petropavlivka in Kharkiv region and Novoselivske in Luhansk region.

“The adversary is not giving up its plans to recapture Kupiansk, trying to reach Synkivka village to create a future foothold for an offensive on Kupiansk. Let me remind you that Kupyansk is an important logistics centre through which the occupation forces were supplied with logistics during the previous occupation,” Volodymyr Fitio notes.

According to ISW (Institute for the study of war), Kremlin likely aimed to occupy Avdiivka and Kupiansk before elections in March 2024.

Russian dictator probably tasked the Russian military with capturing Avdiivka, and possibly Kupiansk, before the March 2024 elections, and the exhibition of the military’s support for Putin’s candidacy is possibly meant as a hedging strategy should the Russian military be unable to meet these given deadlines.

Read also: Constant missile attacks and empty streets: how Kupiansk lives on the front line.

During November 3-26, 296 children were evacuated from the dangerous territory. Two more children are on the list in the Kurylivska community: born in 2012 and 2018. However, there are no children at their addresses. 

Kupiansk, a town with a pre-war population of about 30,000 people, was occupied from late February till September 2022. The city is a railway and road hub in eastern Ukraine between Kharkiv and Luhansk regions.

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Russian shelling on December 9 of Kupiansk in Kharkiv Oblast killed two women aged 67 and 71. Another person, a 33-year-old man, was wounded.