Moscow, Nov 1 (EFE).- The evacuation of civilians from the left bank of the Dnieper River in Ukraine’s Kherson region has begun, Russian-installed deputy administrator Kirill Stremousov said on Tuesday.
“You can say it has already started,” Stremousov said when asked whether the process was underway, according to local media.
On Monday, Vladimir Saldo, appointed by the Russians as governor of Kherson, announced the evacuation zone was expanded to 15 kilometers from the river, claiming that Ukrainian attacks against the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant were expected.
“There is a threat of flooding in the Kherson region, mass destruction of civilian infrastructure and a humanitarian disaster,” he said.
The clearing-out process covers the town of Nova Kakhovka and six other municipalities, all located in the area on the left bank of the river.
Some 80,000 people were transferred to the left bank of the Dnieper as part of the previous civilian evacuation in Kherson, Saldo explained.
According to the US-based Institute for the Study of War, Ukrainian forces could retake Kherson before the end of the year. The Russians captured the key region days after the invasion of Ukraine started on February 24.
Official Ukrainian sources, meanwhile, acknowledged that the capacity of Russian troops has gained strength in the south.
On September 30, Russia announced the annexation of Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk.EFE