The groups of the Armed Forces of Russia blocked the town of Lisichansk from the south, an official representative for the Ministry of Defense, Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov said, TASS reports.
"Formations and military units of the "Center" group of forces under the command of Colonel-General Alexander Lapin, having broken through the well-prepared defense of the Ukrainian troops, defeated the resisting enemy, and, developing the offensive, blockaded the town of Lisichansk from the south," Igor Konashenkov said.
As many as eleven settlements have been liberated in five days, including large settlements of Loskutovka, Mirnaya Dolina, and Ustinovka, he added.
The Ministry of Defense also reported the liberation of the settlements of Gorskoye and Zolotoye in the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR).
According to Konashenkov, the southern group of troops under the command of Army General Sergei Surovikin completed the defeat of the encircled group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Gorskoye trap.
The ring of the allied forces in the area of Gorskoye and Zolotoye closed on June 22. Around 2,000 soldiers were encircled, according to the LPR authorities. Of these, about 1,800 account for the military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, 120 militants of the Right Sector (extremist organization, banned in Russia), up to 80 foreign mercenaries. More than 40 armored fighting vehicles and about 80 guns and mortars were captured.
The People's Militia of the Luhansk People's Republic confirmed that the town of Gorskoye was taken under full control of the allied forces. The press service of the department posted a video showing how the military hoisted the flag of the republic in front of the city administration building.
On June 24, war correspondent Semyon Pegov reported that the Armed Forces, along with fighters from the Luhansk People's Republic, entered the city of Lisichansk, which remained under Ukraine's control.
The same day, Lieutenant Colonel of the People's Militia of the LPR Andrei Marochko stated that the grouping of the Armed Forces of Ukraine near Gorskoye and Zolotoye had completely lost its combat capability and "ceased to exist as an integral unit."
According to Vitaly Kiselyov, Assistant Minister of the Interior of the LPR, about 600 Ukrainian fighters surrendered near Lisichansk.
"About 600 people surrendered near Lisichansk, including the wounded, most of them fled in all directions to Lisichansk," Vitaly Kiselev said.
The United States does not recognize the entry of Ukrainian territories into Russia. Such a development will seriously complicate prospects for a diplomatic settlement