The withdrawal of the Ukrainian forces from the embattled town of Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast, is “out of question” as long as it can be held and defended, Ukrainian General Staff spokesman Andriy Kovaliov said on Ukrainian national television on Jan. 25.
Kovaliov said the situation in Bakhmut was under control, and Ukrainian forces were fighting back the invaders.
“As long as there are basements in Bakhmut and the ability to hold this territory, the fighters will stay there,” Kovaliov said.
He added that invading Russian forces had obliterated the nearby town of Soledar, so the Ukrainian military had taken the decision to leave it.
Serhiy Cherevatyi, the spokesman for the Eastern Group of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, announced on Jan. 25 that Ukrainian troops had withdrawn from Soledar to save lives, as the main task there had been accomplished.
According to him, the Ukrainian army had fulfilled their main task: they did not allow the enemy to systematically break through the Donetsk section of the front and enter the rear, and then move into the Ukrainian defenders’ operational space.