Ukraine: Residential building in Zelensky’s hometown engulfed by flames after deadly strike

Ukraine’s soldiers are ready to fight Vladimir Putin’s “even with our bare hands” if necessary, a senior military official has said, as Kyiv claimed its counteroffensive had already liberated 100 square kilometres of territory from Russia.

Brigadier-General Oleksii Hromov that Kyiv had so far recaptured seven settlements in Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia – two of four regions in which Moscow claimed on Thursday that it planned to hold regional elections in September.

With both sides seeking to claim their enemies losses greatly outnumbered their own, Reuters reported that corpses of dead Russian soldiers were strew along roads leading into the recently recaptured Ukrainian village of Storozheve, alongside burnt-out armoured vehicles.

Other remains of the Russian troops fighting in the region were found dumped in the grass and fields nearby where they died, the news agency reported.

“Three days ago we liberated the village of Storozheve. You can see for yourselves how it was achieved. You can see the destroyed hardware. Glory to Ukraine,” a Ukrainian soldier who gave his name as Artem told the news agency.


Ukraine has recaptured 100 sq km in counteroffensive, general claims

Ukraine has retaken more than 100 square kilometres (38 square miles) of territory in its counteroffensive against Russia, a senior Ukrainian military commander has claimed.

“We are ready to continue fighting to liberate our territory even with our bare hands,” Brigadier-General Oleksii Hromov told reporters.

He confirmed that in the early stages of the offensive, which Ukraine said had begun last week, seven settlements had been liberated in the eastern region of Donetsk and in the southern region of Zaporizhzhia.

The army has advanced by 1.8 miles near the village of Mala Tokmachka in the Zaporizhzhia region and by up to 4.3 miles near a village south of Velyka Novosilka in the Donetsk region, military officials claimed.

The village of Storozheve is among several liberated in the past week

(REUTERS/Oleksandr Ratushniak)

Andy Gregory15 June 2023 14:12


Russia bringing reserve troops for heavy fighting in east from other directions, says minister

Russia is bringing in reserves to eastern sector of heavy fighting in the war from other parts of Ukraine, said Ukrainian deputy defence minister Hanna Malyar said.

“As of now, offensive and defensive operations are ongoing in various directions. In the east, the enemy continues to concentrate a significant amount of forces and resources and pulls up reserves from other directions,” she said on Telegram in the early hours today.

She added that the “enemy is trying with all his might to stop the advance of our troops”.

Arpan Rai16 June 2023 05:42


Spain to send four Leopard tanks to Ukraine

Spain is set to aid Ukraine in the continuing war by giving four Leopard 2A4 tanks, the country’s defence minister Margarita Robles has announced.

The European nation will also send 20 armoured personal carriers.

Arpan Rai16 June 2023 05:08


Ukraine’s ‘D-Day’ offensive is going to need all the help it can get

Both Kyiv and Moscow have reported fierce fighting at points across the vast frontline, writes Bel Trew. But given Russia has had 12 months to fortify its defensive positions, Ukraine needs support to deliver its ‘decisive offensive’

Joe Middleton16 June 2023 05:00


Chechen fighters sent to Russian border with Ukraine, leader Kadyrov says

Chechen fighters have been deployed in Russia’s Belgorod region bordering Ukraine to prevent attacks from “Ukrainian sabotage groups”, Chechnya ruler Ramzan Kadyrov has said.

“Residents of the territories adjacent to the border with Ukraine can rest easy … Whoever encroaches on our borders will receive a lightning response,” Kadyrov said in a post on Telegram.

Kadyrov, a Putin ally who leads the Russian region of Chechnya, said that fighters from the “Zapad-Akhmat” battalion had been deployed near the border village of Nekhoteevka and a checkpoint in Graivoron district, the site of a cross-border attack in May.

Belgorod region has in the past month reported a series of cross-border incursions from pro-Ukraine Russian partisan groups calling themselves opponents of President Vladimir Putin.

Ukraine denies involvement in the cross-border attacks, casting them as a direct consequence of Russia’s February 2022 invasion.

Arpan Rai16 June 2023 04:10


Support mounts for Stoltenberg to stay on in NATO’s top job

Support mounted on Thursday for NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg to have his mandate at the head of the world’s biggest security organization extended yet again as Denmark’s prime minister ruled herself out of the running.

Stoltenberg, a former Norwegian prime minister, has been NATO’s top civilian official since 2014. His term was due to expire last year but was extended to keep a steady hand at the helm after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

U.S. President Joe Biden and his NATO counterparts are due to choose a successor when they meet for a summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 11-12. No candidate has been proposed publicly, and leaders usually decide by consensus on who should be appointed.

Joe Middleton16 June 2023 04:00


Visually impaired people in Ukraine struggle to cope during Russian missile attacks

Sunlight filters through shattered windows, casting a glow upon the dusty furniture and fragments of glass strewn across the floor of the office belonging to Oleksandr Vinkovskyi, director of a Kyiv business where visually impaired people worked.

Vinkovskyi is blind, and can’t see the scale of damage caused by debris from one of many Russian-fired drones on the Ukrainian capital last month. But he knows that 80 people, including 54 with a disability who used to work there manufacturing circuit breakers, sockets and hangers, are now out of work.

Most of the windows have been shattered, the doors broken, equipment ruined, and a gaping hole marks the wall on the third floor. Vinkovskyi has halted the operation for now, deeming it too dangerous for his employees.

Joe Middleton16 June 2023 03:00


Mapped: The damage caused by Ukraine’s devastated dam

War-torn Ukraine is reeling from the collapse of the Nova Kakhovka hydroelectric dam, which saw its reservoir burst causing chaos for miles around.

The catastrophe on Tuesday 6 June forced thousands of residents of nearby towns and villages to evacuate their homes as the floodwater barrelled towards them and left some climbing onto rooftops or into trees to escape the raging torrents.

Hundreds of thousands more have been left without access to clean drinking water in the region as a result of the eco-disaster on the Dnipro River, prompting relief workers to rush fresh supplies to the area as they struggle with the problems of mass resettlement.

Joe Middleton16 June 2023 02:00


NATO debates ways to boost ties with Ukraine as war against Russian invasion drags on

NATO defense ministers gathered Thursday to discuss future relations with Ukraine as Russia’s war on the country thwarts its hopes of joining the world’s biggest security alliance soon.

The ministers were also due to take part in a separate meeting at NATO headquarters of the U.S.-led Ukraine Contact Group — the forum Ukraine’s supporters routinely join to try to drum up weapons and ammunition to help Kyiv fight the Russian invasion.

The NATO meeting comes just under a month before U.S. President Joe Biden and his counterparts gather for a summit in Lithuania in a symbolic show of support for Ukraine. They are expected to underscore their determination to act should Russian President Vladimir Putin try to expand the war westward.

Joe Middleton16 June 2023 01:00


UN atomic watchdog chief visits Ukraine nuclear plant threatened by war with Russia

The head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog visited Europe’s largest atomic power plant Thursday in southern Ukraine, where a recent dam burst and the start of a counteroffensive in the war by Kyiv’s forces have heightened safety risks.

The visit was announced by Ukraine’s national nuclear energy company, Energoatom, in a Telegram post.

Rafael Mariano Grossi, the International Atomic Energy Agency chief, met Tuesday in Kyiv with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to discuss concerns about the Russia-occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.

Joe Middleton15 June 2023 23:59

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