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Kremlin eyes political prize in rubble of Ukraine's Sievierodonetsk

Small east Ukrainian city now a focus of Russia's invasion; industrial town was previously a hub for Ukrainian military

Sievierodonetsk, Ukraine

Smoke rises above a self-propelled howitzer 2S1 Gvozdika of pro-Russian troops, which fired a leaflet shell in the direction of Sievierodonetsk to disperse information materials from combat positions in the Luhansk region (Photo: Reuters)

Reuters Kyiv
The capture of a sleepy Soviet-era factory town in Ukraine's industrial heartland has become the focus of Russia's invasion as President Vladimir Putin seeks to rebuild momentum after a failed attempt to take the capital Kyiv.
If Russia can capture Sievierodonetsk, and its smaller twin Lysychansk on the higher west bank of the Siverskyi Donets river, it will hold all of Luhansk, the first of the two Donbas provinces that Putin has placed at the heart of his campaign.
The city, much of it reduced to rubble by months of attacks culminating in two weeks of intense bombardment, offers little

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First Published: May 30 2022 | 6:22 PM IST

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