Ukraine forces leaving Debaltseve

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Published: Thursday 19th February 2015 by The News Editor

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A Ukrainian military spokesman says more than 90% of its forces have been withdrawn from the fiercely contested town of Debaltseve and its surroundings.

Ukrainian forces began abandoning Debaltseve on Wednesday after weeks of heavy fighting against Russia-backed separatists.

Control of the town is a significant strategic gain for the rebels because it is a railway junction and straddles the most direct route between Donetsk and Luhansk, the separatist region’s two major cities.

The battle for Debaltseve continued despite a ceasefire that was called into effect on Sunday.

Military spokesman Anatoliy Stelmakh also said that rebels heavily shelled a village on the outskirts of the port city of Mariupol during the last day.

Published: Thursday 19th February 2015 by The News Editor

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