Ukraine says it recaptured lost ground in war with Russia

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Civilians leave Irpin after Russian attacks on March 8.
Image: Ministry of Internal Affairs (Ukraine).

Reports yesterday indicated Ukraine has recaptured territory including Irpin, a suburb of capital city Kyiv, from Russian invading forces ahead of scheduled peace talks in Istanbul, Turkey later today.

Mayor of Irpin Alexandar Markushin said: "We have good news today — Irpin has been liberated", but told residents who had fled it was too soon to return as fighting was ongoing.

Trostianets in the north-east near the border with Russia, was also reported to be back under Ukrainian control, according to a senior United States defense official who spoke anonymously with the Associated Press.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy said a guarantee of neutrality and ban on NATO membership were proposed by Russia as peace terms. Nevertheless, Zelenskyy told his country in a broadcast yesterday evening: "We still have to fight, we have to endure. We can’t express our emotions now. We can’t raise expectations, simply so that we don’t burn out."

He stressed "Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are beyond doubt." He also indicated flexibility regarding the semi-autonomous areas of the Donbas region.

Negotiations are planned for Tuesday in Istanbul between representatives of the two nations, but Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said yesterday meetings now would be counter-productive. He said Russian President Vladimir Putin and Zelenskyy should meet when the two sides are closer to agreement.