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Pro-Russian Troops Pound Ukrainian Positions Near Power Station With Artillery

Zenger News obtained the footage from the People’s Militia of the DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic) on July 20.

This slick footage shows pro-Russian soldiers loading artillery pieces with massive shells before apparently firing them at Ukrainian troops and military equipment.

Zenger News obtained the footage from the People’s Militia of the DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic) on July 20.

The pro-Russian militia said: “Ukrainian nationalists continue to be squeezed out of the coal-fueled thermal power station located in Svetlodarsk [Svetlodar TPP].

“The 1st howitzer artillery battery of the People’s Militia of the LPR [Lugansk People’s Republic], in close cooperation with the People’s Militia of the DPR, is active in the area of the Svetlodar TPP.

“Artillery strikes using 152-millimeter D-20 guns are carried out on accumulations of manpower and equipment of Ukrainian nationalists identified by intelligence.”

The People’s Militia of the DPR did not specify where in Ukraine the footage was filmed.

Svetlodarsk (transliteration from Russian) – or Svitlodarsk (transliteration from Ukrainian) – is an industrial city in Donetsk Oblast.

Combat work of the 1st howitzer artillery battery of the People’s Militia of the LPR with the People’s Militia of the DPR against Ukrainian Army in the area of the Svitlodarsk, in Ukraine. (@nm_dnr/Zenger)

We contacted the People’s Militia of the DPR for further comment, as well as the Russian and Ukrainian Ministries of Defense, but haven’t received a reply at the time of writing.

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 in what the Kremlin is calling a “special military operation”. July 21 marks the 148th day of the invasion.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that between February 24 and July 21, Russia had lost about 38,850 personnel, 1,704 tanks, 3,912 armored combat vehicles, 859 artillery units, 251 multiple launch rocket systems, 113 air defense systems, 221 warplanes, 188 helicopters, 710 drones, 167 cruise missiles, 15 warships, 2,781 motor vehicles and fuel tankers, and 72 units of special equipment.

Combat work of the 1st howitzer artillery battery of the People’s Militia of the LPR with the People’s Militia of the DPR against Ukrainian Army in the area of the Svitlodarsk, in Ukraine. (@nm_dnr/Zenger)

CIA chief William Burns said on Wednesday (July 20) that there is no intelligence that Russian President Vladimir Putin is in bad health or unstable.

It has long been rumored in Western media that President Putin, 69, has been suffering from ill health, possibly cancer.

But Mr. Burns joked that the Russian president appeared “too healthy”, adding: “He is convinced that his destiny as Russia’s leader is to restore Russia as a great power.

“He believes the key to doing that is to recreate a sphere of influence in Russia’s neighborhood and he cannot do that without controlling Ukraine”.

Mr. Burns said the U.S. believes Russia has so far lost around 15,000 soldiers in Ukraine, with some 45,000 wounded.

Washington announced on Wednesday (July 20) that it will provide Ukraine with more long-range weapons.

Combat work of the 1st howitzer artillery battery of the People’s Militia of the LPR with the People’s Militia of the DPR against Ukrainian Army in the area of the Svitlodarsk, in Ukraine. (@nm_dnr/Zenger)

This was despite an apparent warning from Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that such an act would broaden Moscow’s military focus in Ukraine.

A report released on the same day by the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights said Russian troops committed serious rights violations in Ukraine.

The Warsaw-based office cited cases including the shelling of a theater in Mariupol in mid-March and of Kramatorsk train station in early April.

Both of these incidents resulted in civilian deaths and may amount to Russian war crimes, said the institution.

The report also detailed witness reports of illegal executions, detentions, abductions, and cases of torture and sexual violence.

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