Ukraine’s army retreated from Lysychansk because there was a risk of the troops being encircled, Ukrainian MP and member of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Security and Defense Serhiy Rakhmanin told Radio NV on July 3.
"After long bloody battles, when the defense line of the Armed Forces was breached near Toshkivka and Vrubivka was captured, there was an advance toward Hirske, Zolote, and there was a serious threat of the group being encircled," Rakhmanin said.
"Then an absolutely logical decision was made to retreat to the second line of defense, namely Siversk – Soledar – Bakhmut."
According to the MP, the fighting in Lysychansk was not aimed at keeping the town.
"In this situation, from a military point of view, there was no longer any logic to holding this town," Rakhmanin said.
"These battles, which continued in the area of the Lysychansk oil refinery, (Vovchoyarivka), Lysychansk itself, were battles that covered the withdrawal of our group towards Siversk and Bakhmut in order to preserve the vast majority of the personnel and a significant part of the weapons, so that those units that were fighting in Luhansk Oblast could retreat to the second line of defense line with minimal losses."
Ukraine's General Staff announced on July 3 that after heavy fighting for Lysychansk, the Ukrainian army had been forced to withdraw from their positions and defense lines. The General Staff said that under conditions of the overall advantage of the Russian invaders in artillery, air power, multiple launch rocket systems, ammunition and number of personnel, a further defense of the town would have led to fatal consequences.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in an evening address on July 3 said Ukraine would not give up any of its territory.
"We will return thanks to our tactics and increased supply of modern weapons," he said.