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Russia’s attack on Ukraine. Report – Sunday, August 20, 2023

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Vladimir Putin traveled to Rostov-on-Don in southern Russia on Saturday to present himself as the one who controls his regime and army, the American Institute for War Studies (ISW) writes in the latest analysis.

Putin met at the headquarters of the Southern Military District, among others with the chief of staff of the Russian army, General Valery Gerasimov, and high-ranking representatives of the army.

According to the ISW, this was most likely Putin’s first visit to the city since the Wagner Group took control of the headquarters of the Southern Military District on June 23-24 during Yevgeny Prigozhin’s rebellion.

The Institute of Internal Affairs emphasizes that Putin rarely visits places related to the war in Ukraine. Analysts recall that in April he was in the occupied territory of the Ukrainian Kherson and Luhansk regions, and in March in Mariupol.

According to ISW, by visiting the headquarters in Rostov, Putin wanted to show that he supported Gerasimov and his commanders, despite the fact that they failed to stop Prigozhin’s rebellion or achieve the goals set by the Kremlin in the war.

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