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Russia-Ukraine war: what we know on day 119 of the invasion – The Guardian

Russia-Ukraine war: what we know on day 119 of the invasion

Ukraine launches airstrikes on Snake Island; Russians reportedly capture settlements near Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk

A Ukrainian service member pets a dog in the eastern city of Sievierodonetsk.

  • The military situation for Ukraine’s defenders in the eastern Donbas is “extremely difficult”, officials have said. There are 568 civilians thought to be holed up in Sievierodonetsk’s Azot chemical plant, as Russian attacks intensify in an effort to capture Sievierodonetsk and Lysychansk. Serhiy Haidai, governor of the Luhansk region, said Lysychansk was getting shelled “en masse”.

  • Russian forces have captured several settlements near Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk. The head of the Sievierodonetsk district military administration, Roman Vlasenko, said the frontline village of Toshkivka had not been under Ukrainian control since Monday. Russian forces also reportedly captured Pidlisne and Mala Dolyna, located south-west of Sievierodonetsk, and saw success near the Hirske settlement in Luhansk.

  • Moscow’s response to Lithuania’s ban on the transit of goods sanctioned by the EU to the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad will not be exclusively diplomatic but practical in nature, foreign ministry press secretary Maria Zakharova has said.

  • Vitaliy Kim, governor of Mykolaiv, has said the city was struck by seven missiles Wednesday morning.

  • Casualties to the forces of the self-proclaimed Donetsk Peoples Republic (DPR), one of Russias proxies in eastern Ukraine, may have amounted to about 55% of the original strength, British intelligence has claimed.

  • One of the leaders of the authorities imposed in occupied Ukraine has described the border between Russia and Ukraine as “worse than the Berlin Wall for the Germans”. “Our reunification with Russia is inevitable, there should be no borders between us” Vladimir Rogov is quoted as saying.

  • Russian President, Vladimir Putin, is set to mark the day when Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union on 22 June, 1941. The date is significant in Russia and remembered as the ‘Day of Remembrance and Sorrow’. Putin will reportedly lay flowers to honour the dead.

  • A Ukrainian photojournalist and a soldier who was accompanying him were “coldly executed” when they were killed in the first weeks of Russia’s invasion, according to a recently published investigation from Reporters Without Borders. The pair were reportedly searching Russian-occupied woodlands for the photographer’s missing image-taking drone, the agency said citing its findings from an investigation into their deaths.

  • Granting Ukraine candidate status to join the EU would be a historic decision signalling to Russia it can no longer claim a sphere of influence over its eastern neighbour, Kyiv’s ambassador to Brussels has said. Vsevolod Chentsov, the head of Ukraine’s mission to the EU, said Russia’s war had united Kyiv with the bloc, while ending what he called a “mistake” about whether his country could belong to the union.

  • Members of the Russian delegation to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) have been denied British visas to attend the next session, according to Vladimir Dzhabarov, the first deputy head of Russian upper house’s international affairs committee.

  • The US attorney general, Merrick Garland, visited Ukraine on Tuesday to discuss Russia’s war crimes, a justice department official said. Garland met with Ukraine’s prosecutor general, Iryna Venediktova, and announced a war crimes accountability team to identify and prosecute perpetrators. “There is no hiding place for war criminals,” Garland said.

  • German self-propelled howitzers have arrived in Ukraine in the first delivery of heavy weapons promised by Berlin. “We have replenishment!” Ukraine’s defence minister, Oleksii Reznikov, announced. “The German Panzerhaubitze 2000 with trained Ukrainian crews joined the Ukrainian artillery family.”

  • Turkey should be cautious about delivering more weapons to Ukraine, the head of Turkey’s weapons production agency said. The remarks by Ismail Demir to the Wall Street Journal show how Ankara is increasingly playing both sides of the war. Turkish-made drones have played a critical role in Kyiv’s defence.

  • Turkey’s military delegation will travel to Russia this week to discuss a possible safe sea corridor in the Black Sea to export Ukrainian grain, according to Turkish presidency sources. A meeting between Turkey, Ukraine, Russia and the United Nations would be held in Istanbul in the coming weeks, possibly with the participation of Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and the UN’s secretary general, António Guterres, the sources said.

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