Yevgeny Prigozhin, leader of the Wagner private military company, said his fighters have advanced in Bakhmut amid fierce fighting surrounded by the remaining buildings still controlled by Ukrainian troops.
"Wagner PMC has advanced 260 meters [0.16 miles] more in Bakhmut," Prigozhin posted on the Telegram channel of his Concord Group. "The enemy now occupies 1.85 km of territory [1.15 miles]. The enemy offers fierce resistance. They fight for every house, every entranceway, every square meter of territory, despite the fact that the enemy only occupies a tiny percentage of territory.”
Prigozhin added it wasn't possible to surround remaining Ukrainian positions because of the recent withdrawal of Russian paratroopers.
“Really [what happened was], Russian paratroopers, as a result of an enemy assault near Bakhmut, took up a favorable line, for the enemy,” he said.
Taking aim at Valery Gerasimov, the Russian General Staff chief, Prigozhin said “the instantaneous retreat of Gerasimov from the enemy today does not allow to close [Bakhmut] off. But we are advancing.”
Prigozhin has frequently been at odds with the Russian Defense Ministry on its tactics and leadership in the conflict.