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Russia and Ukraine battle over Donetsk towns in fight for east

While the city of Donetsk itself has been controlled by pro-Russian separatists since 2014, the Ukrainian army continues to hold large areas of the surrounding Donetsk region, though Russian forces say they are now making significant territorial gains.

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There were fierce clashes between Ukrainian and Russian troops on Thursday as forces loyal to Moscow attempted to dislodge Ukrainian fighters from their positions around the cities of Avdiivka and Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine's Donetsk region.