Ukraine on Saturday temporarily opened river crossings outside of Kherson city to evacuate citizens from Russian controlled territories where fighting is expected to ramp up.
“The evacuation is necessary due to the possible intensification of hostilities in this area. Therefore, the ban on moving across the waters will be lifted,” regional governor Yaroslav Yanushevych said Saturday on Facebook.
The ban has been lifted through Monday though Yanushevych warned crossings will only be permitted during daylight hours.
“During the evacuation, it is necessary to carry the documents confirming one’s identity and confirming Ukrainian citizenship,” he added.
Officials have not specified if the evacuation is being conducted in coordination with Russia.
Ukrainian forces liberated the city of Kherson last month and pushed Russian troops across the Dnieper River, where Moscow maintains a foothold.
Ukrainian officials have reported constant shelling in and around Kherson following Russia’s withdrawal and Ukrainian President Volodymy Zelenskyy issued an ominous warning this week and said Russia was planning “something” in the south.
No details have been provided on why Kyiv believes hostilities will ramp up in the area or what they suspect Russia of planning.
In an overnight address Zelenskyy said that despite the threat and constant shelling facing Kherson “energy workers, builders, communications workers, repair crews, businesses, local leaders, [and] mine clearance specialists” are working get the city and region back up and running.
Over 200 explosives were uncovered in the city this week and de-mining continues Zelenskyy said.
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“Every week there is more mobile communication coverage, more electricity and gas supply, more transport opportunities,” he said, adding that access to medicine, schools and news broadcasting were also returning the area.
Kyiv has remained tight-lipped about their plans to advance further into Kherson and Fox News Digital could not immediately reach the defense ministry for comment.