Vladimir Putin's ally and Russian Wagner Group chief, in a video, called on the Ukrainian president to let the elderly and children have the opportunity to leave Bakhmut.

What Happened: In a video posted on Telegram, the founder of Wagner PMC, Yevgeny Prigozhin, can be seen appealing to Volodymyr Zelenskyy to let people leave the city amid intensified fighting.

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The message roughly translated to "I appeal to the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyytoday we see more and more old people and childrenTheir life near Bakhmut is short a day or two. Let them leave the city," according to TASS.

Prigozhin, earlier in the day, also claimed that his fighters had practically encircled Bakhmut and urged Zelenskyy to pull out the Ukrainian army.The Wagner paramilitary group units have practically surrounded Bakhmut, only one road remains to leave the city, Prigozhin said.

Meanwhile, Antony Blinken, the U.S. Secretary of State, who is in India, said on Friday that the world should not let Putin wage war with impunity in Ukraine. "If we allow with impunity Russia to do what it's doing in Ukraine, then thats a message to would-be aggressors everywhere that they may be able to get away with it too," Blinken said.

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