According to Novikov, the high command of the Ukrainian armed forces had plans to conduct simultaneous strikes against Kremennaya, in Lugansk and towards the Kherson province.
However, he added, the defeat of the Ukrainian formations in Soledar actually forced them to stop these attacks and move their reserves to the strategic place, including from the Kherson direction, where they were preparing the main strike.
Novikov said Ukrainian troops are now firing their artillery at anything they can reach near Kremennaya while the Russians identify enemy firing points to suppress them.
On Tuesday the 17th, acting head of the Donetsk People’s Republic Denis Pushilin announced that the Sol railway station had passed under Russian control.
Serguei Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner troops, announced yesterday that they had taken control of the city of Soledar.