Ukrainian triumph – Russia withdraws

On the morning of November 13, the Russian news agencies Tass and Ria Novosti unexpectedly reported the withdrawal of Russian forces from the southern Ukrainian region of Kherson, as reported by the German news website

However, these reports were soon retracted, with the agencies declaring them ‘annulled.’ The Russian Ministry of Defense classified the incident as ‘spreading false information’ and ‘provocation.’ The original retracted report by the state agency Tass mentioned a relocation of Russian troops in the Dnipro area, moving them to more advantageous positions in the east of the river area in Ukraine.

Historically, the Russian military had used similar ‘redeployments’ to describe defeats or withdrawals in earlier phases of the Ukraine conflict. Two days later, the news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP) published Russia’s official statement that Ukrainian forces had broken through to the Russian-controlled side of the Dnipro in southern Ukraine. This could be interpreted as a sign of a Russian troop withdrawal due to a Ukrainian advance. According to Vladimir Saldo, the Moscow-appointed governor of the Kherson region, about ‘one and a half’ Ukrainian companies were ‘in small groups’ on the east bank of the river. He first expressed this on Wednesday, November 15, via the online service Telegram. Saldo’s remarks marked the first admission by a senior Russian official that Ukraine had successfully advanced to the Russian-controlled bank of the Dnipro. Previously, the Kremlin had refused to comment on such reports. On the previous Tuesday, November 14, the Chief of Staff of the Ukrainian Presidential Office, Andriy Yermak, stated that Ukrainian forces had ‘gained a foothold on the left bank of the Dnipro,’ without providing further details.

Image:, CC BY 4.0, Vladimir Putin (23-04-2021).jpg, via Wikimedia Commons (no changes made)

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