Speed Reads

The battle of Sievierodonetsk

Sievierodonetsk 'on the brink of becoming another Mariupol' as Russian forces move in

Sievierodonetsk, one of the last Ukraine-held cities in the eastern Luhansk province, "appeared to be on the brink of becoming another Mariupol" on Monday as The Associated Press reported that Russian troops had entered the city from the north and south. A manufacturing hub during peacetime, Sievierodonetsk is considered a key objective in Russia's offensive in the Donbas, Reuters reports

"Unfortunately we have disappointing news, the enemy is moving into the city," Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai told national television, as reported by Al Jazeera. "The fighting continues, the situation is very difficult."

The situation in Sievierodonetsk is indeed dire as Russian forces stormed the location after initially "trying unsuccessfully to encircle it," the AP adds. About 13,000 civilians are still believed to be in the city formerly of around 100,000. "We have no power and no communications. The city has been completely ruined," Severodonetsk Mayor Oleksandr Striuk told the AP, adding that "the number of victims is rising every hour, but we are unable to count the dead and the wounded amid the street fighting."