Russia-Ukraine reside updates | Ukraine says controls ‘half’ of Severodonetsk

Ukrainian troops have beaten back Russian forces to control half of a flashpoint eastern city, local officials said, as President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the front lines to support his country’s “true heroes”.

Meanwhile, Zelensky said on June 3 that his country’s military would fend off the Russian invasion in a video marking 100 days of Moscow’s all-out assault on its pro-democracy neighbor.

Meanwhile, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar said that India is not a conduit for Russian oil sales to other countries, categorically denying international media reports that suggest Indian private refiners are “profiteering” by buying Russian crude at discounted rates and then selling it to other buyers at much higher prices.

Read more news on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis here.

NATO

NATO nations block Russian envoy’s plane from Serbia visit

Serbia and Russia on Monday formally confirmed that a planned visit by Russia’s Foreign Minister to the Balkan country will not take place, with Moscow accusing the West of preventing the trip.

The announcement followed reports that Serbia’s neighbors — Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Montenegro — had refused to allow Sergey Lavrov’s plane to fly through their airspace to reach Serbia.

“An unthinkable thing has happened,” Mr. Lavrov said during an online news conference Monday. “A sovereign state has been deprived of its right to conduct foreign policies. The international activities of Serbia on the Russian track have been blocked.”— AP

UK

UK boosts Ukraine support with high-tech missile system

The British government said Monday that the multiple-launch rocket systems it is offering to Ukraine will bring “a significant boost in capability” for the country’s efforts to resist Russia’s invasion, which loomed large over D-Day commemorations in northern France.

The statement came after comments Sunday by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who warned the West against sending longer-range rocket systems to Ukraine, where the war was in its 103rd day.— AP

U.S

Don’t close the embassy, ​​US ambassador tells Russia

Russia should not close the US embassy despite the crisis triggered by the war in Ukraine because the world’s two biggest nuclear powers must continue to talk, the US ambassador to Moscow was quoted as saying on June 6.

President Vladimir Putin has cast the invasion of Ukraine as a turning point in Russian history: a revolt against the hegemony of the United States, which the Kremlin chief says has humiliated Russia since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union.

Ukraine — and its Western backers — says it is fighting for its survival against a reckless imperial-style land grab which has killed thousands, displaced more than 10 million people and reduced swathes of the country to wasteland. – Reuters

Ukraine

Ukraine says position has ‘worsened a little’ in Sievierodonetsk fighting

The position of Ukrainian forces fighting in the eastern city of Sievierodonetsk has “worsened a little”, the regional governor said on June 6.

“Our defenders managed to undertake a counter-attack for a certain time; they liberated almost half of the city. But now the situation has worsened a little for us again,” Luhansk regional governor Serhiy Gaidai told national television. – Reuters

UK

UK says Russia struck rail infrastructure in Kyiv

Britain’s defense ministry said that early on June 6 Russian air-launched cruise missiles struck rail infrastructure in Ukraine capital Kyiv. Heavy fighting continues in the city of Sievierodonetsk and Russian forces are pushing towards Sloviansk, Britain’s Ministry of Defense said in a Twitter update.

President Vladimir Putin has warned he would strike new targets in Ukraine if western nations supplied the country with longer-range missiles. In Sievierodonetsk, the main battlefield in the east, where Russia has concentrated its forces recently, Ukraine officials said a counterattack had retaken half of the city. – Reuters

NATO

NATO holds Baltic Sea naval exercises with Finland, Sweden

NATO kicked off nearly a two-week United States-led naval exercise on the Baltic Sea on Sunday with more than 7,000 sailors, airmen and marines from 16 nations, including two aspiring to join the military alliance, Finland and Sweden.

The annual BALTOPS naval exercise, initiated in 1972, is not held in response to any specific threat. But the military alliance said that “with both Sweden and Finland participating, NATO is seizing the chance in an unpredictable world to enhance its joint force resilience and strength” together with two Nordic aspirant nations.

Ukraine

Ukraine says controls ‘half’ of Severodonetsk

Ukrainian troops have beaten back Russian forces to control half of a flashpoint eastern city, local officials said, as President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the front lines to support his country’s “true heroes”.

As the see-saw battle raged on for the strategically important city of Severodonetsk — the largest in the Lugansk region not under Russian control — more help was promised from abroad.

The United Kingdom said it would follow the United States and send long-range missile systems to Ukraine, defying warnings from Russian President Vladimir Putin against supplying Kyiv with the advanced weapons.

Moscow

Moscow says it destroyed tanks supplied by eastern European countries in strikes on Kyiv

Russia said Sunday that it had destroyed tanks supplied to Ukraine by eastern European countries during strikes on Kyiv.

“High-precision, long-range missiles fired by the Russian Aerospace Forces on the outskirts of Kyiv destroyed T-72 tanks supplied by Eastern European countries and other armored vehicles that were in hangars,” Russian Defense ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said.

Russia

Vladimir Putin warns of strikes over missile supplies as blasts rock Kyiv

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned on Sunday that Moscow will hit new targets if the West supplies Ukraine with long-range missiles, hours after several explosions rocked the Ukrainian capital Kyiv.

If Kyiv is provided with such missiles “we will draw the appropriate conclusions and use our arms… to strike targets we haven’t hit before,” Mr. Putin was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying.

He did not specify which targets he meant.

Ukraine

As Ukraine loses troops, how long can it keep up the fight?

As soon as they had finished burying a veteran colonel killed by Russian shelling, the cemetery workers readied the next hole. Inevitably, given how quickly death is felling Ukrainian troops on the front lines, the empty grave won’t stay that way for long.

Col. Oleksandr Makhachek left behind a widow, Elena, and their daughters Olena and Myroslava-Oleksandra. In the first 100 days of war, his grave was the 40th dug in the military cemetery in Zhytomyr, 90 miles (140 kilometers) west of the capital, Kyiv.

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