Donetsk, Apr 21 — DAN. It is premature to claim that Ukrainian troops are encircled in Artyomovsk; the situation in the town remains tense, Donetsk People’s Republic Acting Head Denis Pushilin said in a video posted on his Telegram channel  on Friday.

“Indeed, the situation in Artyomovsk remains tense, our guys are making gains, but it’s premature to claim at this point that (Ukrainian troops) entrapment is a fact, ” Pushilin said.

Reports on Friday said that Russian assault units continued to fight in the western part of the town.

Artyomovsk is a large district center and fortified area of the Ukrainian army north of Gorlovka. Ukrainian forces occupied the town in 2014. The prewar Artyomovsk had machine building, metallurgical and construction companies. The famous Artyomovsk Champagne Wines Factory is one of the largest in Eastern Europe. The battle for the town has been waged since last year.*jk