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Months of Russian artillery strikes have devastated Chasiv Yar, reducing it to rubble and forcing its 12,000 residents to flee. Ukraine’s army retreated from key positions on Thursday as Russian forces inched closer to capturing the strategically important town in the eastern Donetsk region. The fall of Chasiv Yar would jeopardize nearby cities, compromise Ukrainian supply routes, and advance Russia’s control over the Donetsk region. Ukrainian military spokesperson Nazar Voloshyn cited the destruction of defensive positions and the serious threat of casualties as reasons for the retreat.

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