KYIV: Russian forces have taken partial control of a key industrial city in eastern Ukraine, a regional governor said Tuesday, hours after European Union leaders struck a deal to ban more than two-thirds of Moscow’s oil imports.
Severodonetsk is one of several urban hubs that lie on Russia’s path to capturing the Donbas’s Lugansk region, where Moscow has shifted the bulk of its firepower since failing to capture Kyiv in the war’s early stages.
“The situation is extremely complicated. Part of Severodonetsk is controlled by the Russians,” Lugansk regional governor Sergiy Gaiday said in a statement on social media, adding that Ukrainian troops still retained some areas.
But as Russian troops edged closer to the Severodonetsk city center, officials in Brussels were tightening the economic screws on Moscow.
A compromise deal reached late Monday, meant to punish Russia for its invasion three months ago, cuts “a huge source of financing for its war machine,” European Council chief Charles Michel tweeted.
“Maximum pressure on Russia to end the war,” he said.