NEAR KREMINNA, Ukraine, Nov 3 (Reuters) – Istoryk, a 26-year-old soldier in eastern Ukraine, finally managed to fall asleep one morning, exhausted from the relentless battles against Russian forces in the pinewood forests near Kreminna.

His rest was cut short just an hour later when a fresh firefight broke out, forcing the senior combat medic back into action in a fierce and lengthy exchange.

“We had a firefight for over 20 hours,” said Istoryk, identified by his military call sign. “Non-stop fighting, assaults, evacuations, and you know, I managed it,” he told a Reuters reporter visiting his position on Thursday.

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