Over 90% of Ukrainian troops have been pulled out from Debaltsevo, Anatoly Stelmakh, Press Officer of the military operations headquarters, said on February 19.
“The pull-out from Debaltsevo to new objectives is nearing completion. Over 90% of the troops have left the city and its outskirts in an organized manner," he said.
"Although shelling in this area appeared less intensive, there has been sporadic shelling throughout the day," UNIAN quotes Stelmakh as saying.
Earlier, Head of the DPR Alexander Zakharchenko said Debaltsevo is liberated. “We have completed the mopping-up operation in Debaltsevo. Unfortunately, Ukraine’s leadership ignored the calls for putting down arms. They suffered about 3,000-3,500 casualties.” Zakharchenko said they would start handing over the bodies of the killed today. He said the DPR authorities were going to release all those who had surrendered.
"We are about to start releasing the prisoners of war who have already surrendered and keep surrendering," he said.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko declared on Wednesday evening that 2,475 Ukrainian military and nearly 200 pieces of equipment had been pulled out from Debaltsevo.