Very fierce fighting continues in the Bakhmut sector. Russia has brought in several thousand troops more to the area, Ukraine's Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Malyar has said.
According to her, Russia is trying to use its advantage in heavy artillery and the number of shells. At the same time, it suffers heavy losses, which "disproportionately exceed our losses".
"In Bakhmut, they are turning buildings into ashes. They leave only the foundation, which is impossible to defend. At the same time, our troops are holding the Litak district in Bakhmut. In the suburbs of Bakhmut, the pace of our troops' advance is somewhat slower today. At the same time, the enemy is not able to regain the lost positions," said Malyar.
She added that Ukrainian soldiers are repelling all Russian attacks in this area.
"The defence of Bakhmut and its suburbs is fulfilling its military objectives: the enemy is being destroyed, the enemy's offensive potential is being reduced, and time is being gained for other planned actions," Malyar added.
Earlier, she said that the Russians' statements about the alleged complete capture of Bakhmut are a fake news story: the Russians regularly claim to have full control over the city.
Meanwhile, soldiers of the 3rd Separate Assault Brigade continued to defeat the 72nd Russian brigade in the Bakhmut area on 17-18 May. The 1st and 2nd companies of this brigade were defeated and fled the battlefield.