Putin Begins to Move on Kyiv: Russian Tank Column Is Repelled and ‘another Top Commander Killed’ in Devastating Ambush as Moscow’s Forces Move ‘within a Few Miles’ of Capital Outskirts Amid Fears Mariupol Bombings Are a Sign of What Is to Come

The battle for Kyiv is underway as Russian tanks push to within just a few miles of the city outskirts, analysts and witnesses have said, though initial assaults to the west and east of the capital were repelled as Vladimir Putin’s forces face a long and bloody campaign to try and take the capital.

Kremlin troops launched two attacks on Kyiv Wednesday – one via the besieged western city of Irpin and another through the eastern district of Brovary, with video showing the moment Russian tanks and armoured vehicles were bombarded with artillery in a devastating ambush and forced to turn back.

Colonel Andrei Zakharov, commander of the tank regiment, was also killed in the ambush according to the Ukrainian defence ministry and radio chatter intercepted from Russians on the battlefield. The same transmissions suggested the column suffered heavy losses, with one tank and an armoured vehicle destroyed.

It marks just the latest Russian commander to be killed in Ukraine, after two generals were slain by Kyiv’s troops. Colonel Zakharov had been awarded the Order of Courage by Vladimir Putin in 2016.

Vadym Denysenko, adviser to Ukraine’s interior ministry, said Ukrainian forces had also managed to stop the attack in Irpin and were counter-attacking on Thursday morning with battles underway. In an afternoon update, the military said it had foiled a Russian attempt to cross the Irpin River in the town of Moshchun.

‘The night was quite difficult, but in general we can say that the Ukrainian army counterattacked near Kyiv,’ he said. ‘There is no further detailed information yet.’ Fighting was also reported to the south west of Kyiv as Putin’s men continued their efforts to surround the city.

It means the Russian mission to overwhelm the Ukrainian capital is now underway, analysts at the Institute for the Study of War said, amid fears that devastating airstrikes on the city of Mariupol – which struck a maternity hospital killing three including a six-year-old girl – and Kharkiv could soon be seen in the capital.

President Volodymyr Zelensky, who is still in Kyiv, said Thursday that his ‘heart breaks at what the occupants have done with our cities, our country, and at what they want to do to our people’ who he said needed ‘urgent help.’

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Source: Daily Mail