Russia-Ukraine war: List of key events, day 502

As the conflict enters its 502nd day, these are the main developments.

A woman learning to fire an AK-47. She's dressed in back and squatting down looking through the gun sight. A soldier in kneeling to her right, guiding her through the process.
Civilians are learning to use military weapons [Evgeniy Maloletka/AP Photo]

Here is the situation on Monday, July 10, 2023.


  • Ukraine’s deputy defence minister, Hanna Maliar, said Ukraine was “consolidating” its gains amid heavy fighting in two areas of the country’s southeast and had registered “a certain advance” on Bakhmut’s southern flank.
  • Russia’s defence ministry said its forces had repelled Ukrainian advances near Bakhmut, with fighting made difficult “not only by the daily intensity of fire and battle, but also by topography. The line of contact runs between two hills”.
  • Ukrainian’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy again acknowledged that the counteroffensive was moving more slowly than he or his generals wanted but that Ukrainian forces held the initiative. “All of us, we want to do it faster because every day means new losses of Ukrainians. We are advancing. We are not stuck,” he said in an interview with the United States broadcaster ABC, noting that the military had overcome a “kind of stagnation” in previous months. “We would all love to see the counteroffensive accomplished in a shorter period of time. But there is reality. Today, the initiative is on our side.”
  • The death toll from the Russian bombardment of the eastern Ukrainian city of Lyman rose to at least nine, with more than a dozen people injured. The head of the Ukrainian military administration in the Donetsk region, Pavlo Kyrylenko, said Russian forces had attacked the city with rockets and deliberately targeted residential blocks. Russia denies that it attacks civilians.
  • Russian officials said air defence systems shot down four missiles – one over the Crimean Peninsula and three over Russia’s Rostov and Bryansk regions. No casualties were reported.

Cluster bombs

  • Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Zelenskyy, said cluster munitions were “extremely important” for Ukraine and would help “partially restore parity on the battlefield”. Podolyak added that Russia had been using such munitions in Ukraine for more than a year.
  • Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova condemned the US’s decision to supply Ukraine with cluster munitions, saying it was aimed at prolonging the war.
  • US President Joe Biden will arrive in the United Kingdom on Monday where he will hold talks with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who has been critical of the US move to send cluster bombs to Ukraine.
  • Germany’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said Berlin could not  “block” the US from sending cluster bombs to Ukraine, despite its opposition to their use. However, he noted that if Ukraine no longer had the means to defend itself or if those supporting the war-stricken country backed down, “it would be the end of Ukraine”.
  • In the US, Democratic Senator Tim Kaine and Representative Barbara Lee raised concerns over the cluster bomb decision. Kaine said he had “some real qualms” about the move because it could inspire other countries to sidestep the international convention barring the munitions. Still, he told Fox News, he appreciated that the government had “grappled with the risks”.


  • US President Joe Biden and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed Sweden’s membership of NATO in a phone call ahead of Tuesday’s NATO summit. The White House said Biden conveyed his desire to welcome Sweden into NATO as soon as possible. The two men will hold talks on the sidelines of the summit that will focus on “Ukraine’s position in NATO, Sweden’s NATO membership, and the delivery of F-16” fighter jets, Turkey said.
  • Russia said it wanted NATO to discuss Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant at the summit, accusing Kyiv of causing “systematic infliction of damage” to the site. Moscow occupied the nuclear plant, Europe’s largest, shortly after it began its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.
  • South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa confirmed that next month’s BRICS summit, to which Russian President Vladimir Putin has been invited, will be “physical” despite an arrest warrant for Putin issued by the International Criminal Court.
  • Ukrainian football club Dynamo Kyiv accused Turkish side Fenerbahce of being a club “without honour and conscience” after the team travelled to Russia to play in a pre-season tournament. Russian teams were suspended from participation in FIFA and UEFA competitions after the country’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies