Control of Maryinka, a town in eastern Ukraine that has been virtually destroyed by more than a year of fighting, remains uncertain at this point, but unofficial information suggests that Russian forces have made some progress on that front, according to Reuters

Maryinka, a city where not a single building escaped the bombingsPhoto: YouTube recording

Most accounts of Maryinka, located southwest of the Russian-controlled regional center of Donetsk, describe it as a ghost town where Ukrainian forces reportedly defend various districts on a daily basis.

It was once a city of 10,000 inhabitants, but now there is no civilian population.

The touching image was published by the Ukrainian army

On Saturday morning, the Ukrainian General Staff published an emotional aerial photo on platform X, which shows the ruins of the city’s buildings.

“The Russian occupiers are destroying everything they can touch,” reads the accompanying post, and next to Maryinka’s name is an emoji with a broken heart.

The Ukrainian military said in a report on Friday evening that Russian troops were unsuccessful in their attempts to advance on villages near Maryinka, but did not say anything about troop movements in the town.

The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation does not mention the city in its reports.

The Russians seem to have advanced in Mariyka

However, the Russian blogger Rybar commented on the images spread on social networks, in which Russian troops raise the national flag in the southwest of the city.

Ukrainian forces, he added, remained under the control of other districts. “However, if the information about the movement of Russian troops to the south is correct, then the withdrawal of the enemy is something that is rapidly approaching,” Rybar added.

The Russians say they have captured him since last March

Ukrainian social media accounts mentioned the Russian offensive but quoted soldiers who rejected the idea that Moscow’s forces controlled the entire city.

“The Russians say they captured Maryinka back in March 2022. Maryinka has been in ruins for more than a year,” says a post on the DeepState blog.

Russian troops in eastern Ukraine have been attacking the town of Avdiyivka, located 40 km north of Maryinka, since mid-October.

Ukraine says its troops control Avdiivka, a town where not a single building remains.

Speaking on national television, Ukrainian military spokesman Volodymyr Fityo did not mention Maryinka or Avdiyivka, but noted that Russian troops are striking in many parts of the 1,000-kilometer front.

He said Ukrainian forces repelled attacks near Kupyansk, an area in the country’s northeast that was captured by Russia after its invasion in February 2022 but repulsed by Ukrainian forces a year ago.