Ukrainians celebrate the regaining of Kherson, Russia’s recent loss.
Residents cheered as Ukrainian troops arrived in the centre of Kherson on Friday, after Russia abandoned the only regional capital it had captured
Residents cheered as Ukrainian troops arrived in the centre of Kherson on Friday, after Russia abandoned the only regional capital it had captured since its invasion began in February.
“Today is a historic day. We are regaining control of the country’s south, as well as Kherson “In an evening video address, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said.
“Our defenders are currently on the outskirts of the city, and we are very close to entering. However, special units have already arrived in the city “he stated.
Russia claimed to have withdrawn 30,000 troops across the Dnipro River with no casualties. However, Ukrainians painted a picture of a chaotic retreat, with Russian troops abandoning their uniforms, dropping their weapons, and drowning while fleeing.
The withdrawal was Russia’s third major retreat of the war, and the first to involve surrendering such a large, occupied city in the face of a major Ukrainian counter-offensive that has retaken parts of the east and south.
A video footage sourced by news agency Reuters, showed dozens of people rejoicing and singing victory cries in Kherson city’s centre square, as the apparent first Ukrainian forces to arrive snapped photos among the crowd.
Two men threw a female soldier into the air while carrying her on their shoulders. Some residents dressed up with Ukrainian flags. One man was joyfully crying.
Ukraine’s defence intelligence agency said Kherson had been returned to Ukrainian control and that any remaining Russian troops had been instructed to surrender to Kyiv’s forces when they entered the city.
Zelenskiy stated that efforts to make Kherson safer, including the removal of what he called a huge number of landmines, would begin as soon as feasible.