Ukraine is aiming to exhaust and inflict heavy losses on Russian forces trying to capture the small eastern city of Bakhmut, the commander of Ukrainian ground forces said in a video posted on Tuesday. In a video showing him addressing soldiers in what appeared to be a large industrial warehouse, Col Gen Oleksandr Syrskyi said Russia was continuing to focus on the Bakhmut area after months of battle. “As of today, our main task is to wear down the overwhelming forces of the enemy and inflict heavy losses on them. It will create the necessary conditions to help liberate Ukrainian land and speed up our victory.”
Ukraine’s frontline city of Avdiivka “is being wiped off the face of the Earth” amid intensifying Russian shelling, according to its top local official. Starting on Sunday, the city’s utilities will begin to be shut off as “more and more of the town is shelled and destroyed daily,” said Vitaliy Barabash, the city’s military administration head.
Russian forces launched 24 airstrikes, 12 missile strikes and carried out 55 attacks from rocket salvo systems in the last 24 hours, according the latest update from the general staff of the armed forces of Ukraine.
Multiple explosions were reported in Kyiv on Monday night, according to the mayor, Vitaliy Klitschko. Klitschko said a shop caught fire in the west but there were no immediate reports of casualties. Kyiv air defence said it shot down all drones involved.
A cultural centre and a children’s playground, as well as five private houses, were hit in the border village of Chernatske in Sumy, while a hospital was struck in the Dnipro district of Kherson.
Possible drone attacks against vital energy infrastructure are a serious threat to Russia’s energy security, energy minister Nikolai Shulginov said on Tuesday. Shulginov did not mention Ukraine by name, but Russia says it has foiled a number of attempted Ukrainian drone attacks in recent months.
Oleksii Reznikov, the Ukrainian defence minister, posted a video thanking the UK for the first British Challenger 2 main battle tanks to arrive in Ukraine. “These fantastic machines will soon begin their combat missions,” he wrote on Twitter.
Germany’s much-awaited shipment of 18 Leopard 2 battle tanks has arrived in Ukraine, the German defence ministry has confirmed. “As promised, our tanks have arrived on time in the hands of our Ukrainian friends”, Boris Pistorius, the German defence minister, said on Monday night. “I am sure that they can make the difference on the front.”
Belarus’s foreign ministry said on Tuesday that it had been forced to house Russian nuclear weapons on its territory by the aggressive actions of Nato countries that were threatening Belarus’s own security.
Romania and Poland are in talks with the European Commission over export tracing mechanisms for Ukrainian grain to ensure local farmers are not hurt by a flood of cheap Ukrainian imports, the Polish and Romanian prime ministers said on Tuesday.
The UK and Poland will build two temporary villages in western and central Ukraine to provide housing for people who have been forced from their homes by Russia’s invasion, the UK government has said. The villages in Lviv and Poltava will offer accommodation for more than 700 Ukrainians, a fraction of the millions either displaced in Ukraine or who have fled the country since the war began more than a year ago.
Alexander Novak, the Russian deputy prime minister, said on Tuesday that Russia needed to focus on boosting energy exports to so-called “friendly” countries, as he said Russian oil supplies to India jumped 22-fold last year.
At least two people were killed in a Russian missile strike in the eastern city of Sloviansk on Monday, according to the regional governor. The attack left 29 others wounded, Pavlo Kyrylenko said, adding that a number of high-rise buildings and offices were damaged or destroyed. Volodymyr Zelenskiy posted a video clip that showed vehicles on fire and debris strewn across the road.
Zelenskiy, Ukraine’s president visited Ukraine’s northern Sumy region on Tuesday during his tour of areas of the country that have felt the brunt of Russia’s invasion. Zelenskiy met officials and local residents in the city of Okhtyrka, which saw fierce battles last year but was never occupied, and Trostianets, which was occupied by Russian forces for a month and liberated in March 2022.
Zelenskiy told the IAEA head, Rafael Grossi on Monday that safety at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear facility could not be guaranteed until Russian troops left. The pair met on Monday to discuss the management of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant and had a “rich exchange” according to Grossi.
Zelenskiy “visited advanced positions in the Zaporizhzhia region on Monday, learning about the operational situation and presenting awards to the military”, his office said.
The UN security council on Monday declined a Russian request to investigate who blew up the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Russia, China and Brazil voted in favour of the motion to investigate, but it failed as it lacked the nine votes needed in the 15-nation council to carry. The US deputy ambassador Robert Wood said there was no need with separate investigations already under way.