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Russian defense minister reports total liberation of Lugansk to Putin

Moscow, Jul 3 (Prensa Latina) Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu confirmed to President Vladimir Putin on Sunday that the Army "liberated" the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic (LPR), in eastern Ukraine.

“The Russian troops, along with the Lugansk militias, took control over Lisichansk and several nearby settlements, including Belogorovka, Novodruzhesk, Maloryazantsevo and Belaya Gora,” the military chief reported to the president, according to the Defense Ministry’s website.

Shoigu added that during the day, the forces liberated territories with a total area of 182 square kilometers.

Earlier, the Defense Ministry’s spokesman, Major General Igor Konashenkov, informed that the Russian forces had closed the ring around Lisichansk, in the Donbass.

Russia has been continuing the special military operation in Ukraine since February 24, claiming that the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, previously recognized by Moscow as sovereign States, had requested help in the face of Ukraine’s “genocide.”