Ukraine: Russia Captures Key Eastern City of Sievierodonetsk, Hits Kyiv With Multiple Missile Strikes
British Military Intel: “Russia’s capture of the city is a significant achievement within this reduced objective.”
Russian military has captured the Ukrainian city of Sievierodonetsk in what would be the biggest gain for the invading forces since the fall of Mariupol last month.
“Russian forces fully occupied the eastern Ukrainian city of Sievierodonetsk on Saturday, both sides said, confirming Kyiv’s biggest battlefield setback for more than a month following weeks of some of the war’s bloodiest fighting,” the Reuters reported Sunday.
The UK military intelligence called the capture of Sievierodonetsk is a ‘significant achievement’ for Russia in the east. “Russia’s capture of the city is a significant achievement within this reduced objective. The settlement was a major industrial centre and it occupies a strategic position on the Siverskyi Donets River,” the Britain’s Ministry of Defense said in a statement on Sunday.
The Sky News reported the fall of the strategic eastern Ukrainian city:
The Ukrainian city of Severodonetsk is now under the “full occupation” of Russian forces following a weeks-long battle.
Mayor Oleksand Stryuk said on national television: “The city is now under the full occupation of Russia. They are trying to establish their own order, as far as I know they have appointed some kind of commandant.”
Russia’s Interfax news agency also cited the defence ministry as saying the city in the Luhansk was now under full control of Russian forces.
⚡️UK Defense Ministry: Capturing Sievierodonetsk is a significant achievement of Russian forces.
“However, it is only one of several challenging objectives Russia will need to achieve to occupy the whole of the Donbas region,” the ministry said. pic.twitter.com/M1Z84Wxgou
— The Kyiv Independent (@KyivIndependent) June 26, 2022
The latest gain brings Moscow closer to its declared objective of occupying the entire Donbas, the southeastern part of Ukraine.
Multiple Missile Strike Hit Kyiv, Other Cities
Amid the news of Ukrainian territorial losses in the east, the Russian forces hit capital Kyiv with multiple missile striked on Sunday.
“Russia attacked the Ukrainian capital early Sunday, striking at least two residential buildings, the mayor of Kyiv said, as elsewhere Russian troops fought to consolidate their gains in the country’s east” The Associated Press reported.
The Russian missile- and airstrikes hit other Ukrainian cities as well. “Russia also launched dozens of missiles on several areas across the country far from the heart of the eastern battles. Some of the missiles were fired from Russian long-range Tu-22 bombers deployed from Belarus for the first time, Ukraine’s air command said,” the news agency added.
According to the German public broadcaster DW News, Russian military sources confirmed the early morning missile strikes across Ukraine. One of the location hit by a Russian missile was just 19 miles from the Polish border, the German news outlet noted.
This video appears to show a person being pulled from the rubble of a building hit by a Russian strike in Kyiv.
— Sky News (@SkyNews) June 26, 2022
Moscow Promises Nuclear-Capable Missiles to Belarus
Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised nuclear-capable missiles to Belarus, media reports on Sunday said. Belarus, former soviet republic and a key Russian ally, served as the staging ground for Russian offensive in the western part of Ukraine.
As Russia adopts a increasingly hostile posture towards Europe and the NATO alliance, Belarus — which borders Poland and several Baltic countries — assumes an even greater strategic position for Moscow.
The BBC reported the Russian nuclear offer:
Russia will send nuclear capable short-range missile systems to its ally Belarus in the coming months, President Vladimir Putin has said.
He said Iskander-M systems “can fire ballistic and cruise missiles, both conventional and nuclear types”. The systems have a range of up to 500km (310 miles).
Mr Putin has made several references to nuclear weapons since then, which some have interpreted as a warning to Western countries not to intervene.
Speaking in St Petersburg, Mr Putin said Russia would help to modify Belarusian SU-25 warplanes so that they could carry nuclear weapons, in response to a query from Mr Lukashenko.
Germany: G7 Summit in Shadow of War
Amid raging war in Ukraine, the G7 summit of advanced industrialized nations is set to began in southern German state of Bavaria. President Joe Biden is expected to arrive in Germany among other Western leaders for the 3-day event.
The summit will give Western leaders an opportunity to present a united front against the Russia aggression. The “G7 leaders are expected to try to use the summit to clear these muddy waters, promising more weapons to Ukraine and more sanctions against Russia,” the BBC reported.
The G7 meeting takes place just days after the annual BRICS summit hosted by Chinese President Xi Jinping. BRICS, an alliance of developing nations dominated by Russia and China, seeks to present itself as a counterweight to the U.S.-led Western Alliance
German broadcaster DW News reported:
Germany is hosting the G7 summit from Sunday to Tuesday at the Elmau luxury resort in the Bavarian Alps.
World leaders began arriving on Saturday, including US President Joe Biden. As well as attending the summit, Biden is due to meet for bilateral talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
Scholz has said it is important that the summit send a signal of united support for Ukraine.
Proposals to jointly increase pressure on Russia, collective military and humanitarian support for Ukraine, and the impact of the conflict in driving energy and food prices sharply higher will be focal points at the summit.
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