Despite Russian-backed forces claiming control of the city, Ukrainian President Zelensky insists that Bakhmut is not under Russian occupation while pleading for international assistance during the G7 summit.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky denied claims that Bakhmut, a city in Ukraine, was occupied by Russia during his visit to Japan for the G7 summit. While Wagner founder Yevgeny Prigozhin had previously claimed victory in Bakhmut, Ukrainian military sources stated that they still maintained control of some buildings on the outskirts of the city. Zelensky, comparing Bakhmut to Hiroshima, promised to reconstruct Ukraine similarly to how Hiroshima was rebuilt after World War II. There was confusion about the status of Bakhmut when Zelensky stated that it was “only in our hearts,” but his office clarified that he did not mean the city had fallen. Russian forces control most of Bakhmut, and Ukrainian forces are considering a tactical withdrawal. Zelensky met with world leaders at the G7 summit to seek support for Ukraine, and the US announced it would allow its allies to supply advanced fighter jets to Ukraine, but no commitments have been made yet.