The Ukrainian city of Kherson is the only regional capital that Russia was able to take after invading in February, and the Russian force has been ordered to withdraw.
Russia's in-charge in Ukraine, Gen. Sergei Surovikin, claimed that the city was no longer able to receive supplies.
As a result of the withdrawal, Russian forces will completely leave the western bank of the River Dnipro.
In light of the Ukrainian counteroffensive, it represents a severe setback for Russia.
The military's top brass announced on Russian state television, while Gen. Surovikin provided an update on the situation in Kherson.
Kherson witnessed celebrations shortly after Russia withdrew. Media showed crowds of citizens waving flags captured on camera cheering the Ukrainian military at Freedom Square while chanting, "Glory to the Armed Forces of Ukraine! " The White House welcomed the outcome as an "extraordinary victory," while the president of Ukraine, Zelensky, referred to it as a "historic day."
After a week, things completely changed for the people of Kherson. Scrambling for bread and water has taken the place of the joyful music-laden dancing that once filled Kherson's main square.
When Russia withdrew its troops from Kherson earlier this month, it did so because Ukrainian forces had left the city without heat, electricity, running water, or cell phone service.
In an interview a month ago, General Sergei Surovikin hinted that things were not perfect in Russia. He said, "A challenging scenario has developed." In Kherson, the enemy purposefully bombards residential and commercial structures. HIMARS missiles damaged the Kakhovskaya hydroelectric power station's dam and the Antonovsky Bridge, stopping traffic there.
As a result, he said, "food is hard to come by in the city, and there are some problems with the water and energy sources. All of this not only makes citizens' lives significantly more difficult but also directly endangers them.
Therefore, the Russian soldiers had already moved more than half of the people to Russia.
The actual population of Kherson is only a fourth of the 320,000 people who lived there before the war. The crowd that had gathered in the plaza to welcome the Ukrainian army back in previous days was noticeably missing on Friday as the temperature dropped below freezing. Instead, hordes of people jostled for supplies like food and diapers from trucks parked on the main plaza.
Locals asserted that the difficulty of the task ahead and the chilly, rainy weather was to blame for the recent decline in excitement. Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine, said that more than 10 million people there currently live without electricity in a late-night speech on Thursday.
Mykhailo Podolyak, a presidential adviser for Ukraine, claims that Russian forces mined Kherson to make it a "city of death." The head of Ukraine's armed forces claims that since October 1 Kyiv's soldiers have retaken 41 villages and towns. Retaking the city may give Ukraine a base from which to deploy supplies and forces to retake other lost areas, notably Crimea.
According to Zelenskyy, the Ukrainian military is rushing to clear 170,000 square meters of landmines nationwide. The military in southern Ukraine is carefully assessing infrastructure that is at risk from mines while operating behind enemy lines.
On Wednesday, Russian Defense Minister Shoigu gave the order for troops to leave Kherson and the surrounding districts. Officials from Ukraine seem to have changed their minds about their earlier doubts about whether Russians were fleeing. The Russian military, according to a Ukrainian official, is advancing toward the Antonivsky Bridge.
The head of the Ukrainian administration in Kherson, Halyna Lugova, speaks about the harsh conditions there. According to Ukrainian press sources, Russians destroyed infrastructure, some mobile towers, and the local television station.
Roads and bridges destroyed by the Ukrainian army prevent speedy military transfers over the Dnieper River.
He declared, "The challenging energy supply scenario continues in a total of 17 regions, including the capital." Along with the Russian army, more than half of the people left for Russia. As Russia completes its retreat, Ukrainian forces enter Kherson (WSJ).
Kherson is still a part of Russia, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, according to the Wall Street Journal. This includes a responsibility to recover Kherson City as the special military operations proceed. Ukraine must overcome a difficulty as winter approaches and rebuild the energy cables it wrecked.
The pullback by Russia is tactical. Even "hardliners" like Russian military contractors Wagner Group and Ramzan Kadyrov, the leader of Chechnya, have mostly backed the military command's choice. During the Kharkiv pullback in September, this wasn't the case. It is obvious that sooner or later, Russian forces will return to Kherson.
To protect Crimea's security, connectivity, water, etc., two sizable pieces of the Antonivka bridge, which connects Kherson with the east bank of the Dnieper, have also been destroyed by the fleeing Russian soldiers. The Dnieper de facto serves as the "buffer zone" in the oblast because 60 percent of the territory in the Kherson region is under Russian authority.
Additionally, there are rumors that the troops are being sent to Belarus, where the last assault on Kyiv would be conducted. Zelensky is going to have problems. Russia appears to be losing out with the current pullout, but only temporarily.