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At least 1,000 civilians reported killed in Izyum

At least 1,000 civilian residents of Izyum were killed during the Russian occupation. 

Maksim Strelnikov, president of the Izyum city council, told online outlet that “the occupiers here, as in other places, committed war crimes and tried to hide them. According to the information that we have, 1,000 civilians at minimum were killed as a result of military actions. Unfortunately, many more people have suffered because they lacked access to timely medical care.”

In Strelnikov’s opinion the authorities’ first order of business is supplying medicine and hospital care for the sick and wounded. Another serious problem is the restoration of heat.

“More than 80 percent of the city’s infrastructure is, unfortunately, destroyed. This applies to large apartment buildings with private homes, as well as to municipal and institutional buildings, and to industrial capacity. The most frightening thing is the winter ahead. Centralized heating, which the majority of residents rely on, is destroyed,” Strelnikov said.

Valery Marchenko, the mayor of Izyum, gave similar information during a conversation with the BBC. “Since March, when the occupiers bombed us with planes and artillery, our city has been battered, large buildings and infrastructure has suffered. Almost all our boilers are wrecked, and big questions hang over the cold season. Almost 70 percent of multistory buildings are damaged, completely bombed out. The situation is very difficult,” he said. 

News broke about Russian troops’ retreat from Izyum on September 10. Now, according to local authorities, “stabilizing measures” are underway in the city and the Ukrainian Armed Forces are sweeping the territory in search of Russian military personnel. After that the city will undergo “filtration” to identify collaborators.

At the end of August the Ukrainian army launched a counteroffensive and on September 9 President Zelensky announced that the UAF had liberated more than 30 cities and towns in the Kharkiv region, which had been occupied since spring. On September 11 Valery Zaluzhny, the commander-in-chief of the UAF, reported that more than 1,150 square miles (3,000 square km) of territory had been returned to Ukrainian control.

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