Russian mercenary leader Wagner admitted that Kiev would fight for Pakmut “until the end”.

Wagner, the head of the Russian mercenary force fighting for the eastern Ukrainian city of Baghmut, agreed on Monday that it would defend the besieged city “to the end”.

“They will fight for Artyomovsk [nome russo para Bakhmut] Until the end, it is clear,” Yevgeny Prigozhin said, according to his press office.

Prigozhin, a confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin, said Wagner’s mercenaries must also do their job to the end.

But he added that it needed additional help from the Russian military command.

“For the Ukrainian armed forces to open Artyomovsk, they must first besiege Wagner,” Prigozhin said, adding that he was “knocking on all the doors” to get reinforcements and ammunition.

The group’s leader, Wagner, on Sunday complained of a shortage of ammunition, admitting delays in supply and acts of sabotage.

Prigozhin pointed out today that the Russians would stop the Ukrainians if help arrived and everyone could do their jobs, not the other way around.

Otherwise, everything will go to hell,” he warned.

The statements of the head of the Wagner group come after the commanders of the Ukrainian troops decided to continue the defensive operation in Pakmut.

This position was expressed by the Commander of the Ground Forces of Ukraine, Colonel General Oleksandr Chirsky, and the Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Valery Zalushny.

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The Ukrainian presidency today guaranteed to strengthen its positions in Pakmut, amid speculation that forces ordered by Kiev would eventually be withdrawn.

Russia has been trying since the summer of 2022 to capture Bagmut, a city in eastern Ukraine that had about 70,000 residents before the Russian invasion a year ago.

Russian forces have been advancing in the area in recent days, threatening to encircle it, but the Ukrainians continue to defend it.

On Sunday, the Institute for the Study of War, a group that brings together US experts, said Ukrainian forces “may have prepared a limited tactical withdrawal” in Bagmut.

“Ukrainian forces are unlikely to withdraw from Bakmut all at once, and a gradual withdrawal will continue as they fight to defeat Russian forces in urban fighting,” the agency predicted in its Sunday report.

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