Russian forces expand presence in eastern Ukraine

Russian forces are trying to establish full control over the beleaguered city of Mariupol, Ukraine’s armed forces said, ahead of what is expected to be an intense wave of fighting in the east of the country as Moscow reinforces its positions there.

A port city on the Sea of ​​Azov that was the site of some of the most intense bombardment of the war, the fate of Mariupol holds both strategic and psychological importance. If Russia takes control of the city, it would be an important mark of progress as it expands from areas it already controls in the Donbass region to the Crimean peninsula, which it annexed in 2014.


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