This is the situation as it stands on Tuesday, June 12, 2023
- Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said his forces were making progress and inflicting losses on Russia amid rain and fierce fighting.
- Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar said the Ukrainian military had retaken seven villages spanning 90 square kilometres (35 sq miles) from the Russians in eastern Ukraine.
- Russia’s defence ministry, meanwhile, did not confirm any Ukrainian advances, saying its forces repelled attacks by Ukrainian troops in the Donetsk and Zaporizhia regions.
- The ministry said it signed a contract with the Akhmat group of Chechen special forces after ordering that all private armies fighting for Russia do so by July 1.
- Zaporizhia Governor Yuri Malashko said at least one person was killed and another injured in a Russian attack in the town of Orikhiv.
- Ukraine’s governor of Donetsk, Pavlov Kyrylenko, said two people were injured in Avdiivka after Russia bombed the House of Culture and high-rise residential buildings.
- Ukraine’s Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko said 41 people were still missing in the floods caused by the Nova Kakhovka dam breach. Ten people have already been confirmed dead in the southern Kherson region after the floods.
- France, Germany and Poland showed their support for Ukraine’s counteroffensive with French President Emmanuel Macron pledging that “Ukraine will not be conquered”.
- The leaders of seven African countries could visit Ukraine and Russia this week to discuss a peace initiative, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.
- Secretary of States Antony Blinken said the United States was working to get consular access to detained US citizen Travis Leake. Leake, a former musician, was arrested in Moscow on Saturday on drugs charges.
- United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said he was concerned that Russia will leave the Black Sea Grain Initiative (BSGI) on July 17. Moscow has threatened to walk away from the deal, which allows Ukraine to export its farm products from its Black Sea ports, a number of times.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Russian soldiers wounded in Ukraine in a rare face-to-face meeting with ordinary troops at the Central Vishnevsky Military Clinic outside Moscow to make the Russia Day holiday.
- The International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) said it would allow athletes from Russia and Belarus to participate in competitions from 2024, paving the way for an appearance at the Olympics.
- Ukrainian pilots could begin training on F-16 fighter jets as soon as this summer, the Dutch defence minister told the Reuters news agency. She did not specify a month, but said the whole training programme was expected to be fully operational within six months.
Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies