A few kilometers from Severodonetsk, pro-Russian separatist forces are showing their optimism

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Nearly three months to the day after the start of the special operation, the Kremlin says, it appears that the redeployment of Russian troops and equipment on the ground in the Donbass has been completed. The battles are intense. On the line of sight of Moscow, they closed Severodonetsk and Lishansk. Reporting a few kilometers away, in Rubinge, together with pro-Russian separatist forces in the Luhansk region.

with our private correspondent Anisa Al Jabri

These are the thousands of small rectangles of 10 centimeters by 5 centimeters that are being fired every day at the cities that Russian and pro-Russian forces seek to conquer. On these small pieces of paper, several lines. Among them: Soldiers and officers of the Ukrainian armed forces! Your 24th Brigade headquarters has been destroyed. Your commanders have fled, and your ammunition has also been destroyed. Nobody can help you anymore. If you continue to resist, you are doomed to die. Your only choices are to flee or surrender. Zelensky betrayed you, just as he did to the Azov fighters who surrendered without glory. Follow our instructions on the back of this sheet. He follows instructions to surrender, raise hands, and drop the barrel of the gun.

Missiles that send papers to cities. © RFI / Anisa Al Jabri

It’s very soon »

Nobody is in sight on Sunday, yet the intensity of the fighting can be seen everywhere: anti-missile missiles on the plains, a plume of black smoke over Severodonetsk can be seen for about twenty kilometers. In Rubinge, a few kilometers away while the crow flies from this town, a captain, his features drawn with fatigue, and his speech slow; But upon taking the city, his contentment is: ” Very soon, I think. To be more precise, a few weeks at most. Cities will be captured in this order, first Severodonetsk, then Lyssychansk. Then Kramatusk and Slovyansk. »

and yet? The officer let out a tired sigh. ” Then we wait for orders Then he pulls up his pants and shows his calf and ankle blindfolded. The day before, a few meters from the courtyard of this building where a Russian NGO operates, he was hit by a missile.

After a few tens of seconds, the blows echoed. The civilians were ordered to return to the shelter immediately.

Distribution of food aid in Rubinjh, May 22, 2022.
Distribution of food aid in Rubinjh, May 22, 2022. © RFI / Anisa Al Jabri

Rubinja is cut off from the world

The green spring plains, and sometimes the peasants who cultivate them, are often empty spaces where guns and anti-missiles nest. When you move towards Severodonetsk from the east, not everything is destroyed but the imprint of Russian and pro-Russian forces is everywhere. In response to the “Slava Ukraine”, the rallying cry of the opposing forces, a sign “Slava Liner”, named after this other Donbass republic, was placed at the head of the fighting.

At the entrance to Rubinge, only military trucks or vehicles marked Z for “Special Operation”. Rare or retired former employees of paper mills or chemical plants commute outside on foot or by bicycle. When humanitarian aid funds arrive from a Russian NGO, people rush out of basements or apartments. First, first served, and nothing more for those who arrive too late. Here we often feel hungry and are always cut off from the world.
“We don’t know anything, the radio doesn’t work, there’s no TV and no internet, said a woman. We do not know anything about what happened in Mariupol, in Lysichansk. We know nothing. » Sometimes soldiers might drop a few words here and there, and that’s our only source of information.” man responds. ” I think it’s the same everywhere in every city, Women communicate. Nothing good happens. They took Robinjeh and are now heading towards Severodonetsk. They want the Donbass republics to be part of Russia. I don’t think we can expect anything good. »

The man signals his wife to remain silent. About this retired couple, we hurry, our eyes often change, and when we ask where the other inhabitants went, their little half, no longer in the city. awkward silence…

Rubinge, May 22, 2022.
Rubinge, May 22, 2022. © RFI / Anisa Al Jabri

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