Russia has taken control of Lysychansk, the last city in the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine that was still under Ukrainian control. Ukraine’s military announced on Sunday that it had been “forced to withdraw” from the critical city.
Here are today’s main developments:
Russia preparing for assault on Donetsk region, says Ukraine: The General Staff of the Ukrainian military said that after taking over Lysychansk, Russian forces are preparing to continue their move toward cities in Donetsk still controlled by Kyiv.
“In the Sloviansk direction, enemy units are trying to establish control over the settlements of Bohorodychne, Mazanivka, and Dolyna through assault operations,” the Ukrainian military said in a status update early Monday.
The focus now shifts to the cities of Sloviansk and Kramatorsk, the two largest population centers in the area.
School destroyed in attack on Kharkiv: A secondary school in Ukraine’s second largest city was destroyed after it was hit by a Russian missile around 4 a.m. local time, the head of the regional administration, Oleh Synehubov said in a Telegram post Monday.
There were no injuries at the school, but strikes in other areas of the Kharkiv region left at least three dead and six injured in the village of Bezruky, Synehubov added.
Hockey player detained in Russia for allegedly evading military service, per reports: Russian goalkeeper Ivan Fedotov was detained in St. Petersburg on the request of the military prosecutor’s office on Friday for evading military service, according to reports from Russian media outlets.
According to Russian news outlet Fontanka, the military prosecutor’s office believes that there are grounds to “consider Fedotov an army evader.” The 25-year-old Finnish-born Russian signed a one year entry level contract with the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers on May 7, after the conclusion of Russian and Chinese hockey league KHL’s season, where he led CSKA Moscow to win the Gagarin Cup.
Russia says weekend strike on Belgorod was aimed to provoke Moscow: Moscow says the alleged missile strike carried out by Ukrainian forces on the city of Belgorod aimed to provoke Russia, according to the spokeswoman for the country’s Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova. The Russian Ministry of Defense accused Ukraine of targeting the city of Belgorod with three Tochka-U missiles and of using drones laden with explosives to hit the Russian city of Kursk on Sunday.
Ukraine has not acknowledged the strikes.
Ukraine asks Turkey to “detain” Russian-flagged ship carrying Ukrainian grain: Ukraine has requested that Turkish authorities detain a Russian-flagged ship carrying Ukrainian grain, the country’s ambassador to Turkey Vasyl Bodnar told CNN Saturday.
The Zhibek Zholy vessel is currently at anchor near the Turkish port of Karasu as “it was in fact detained by Turkish customs authorities and it is not allowed to enter the port,” Bondar said. “Now we are waiting for the decision of the relevant authorities of Turkey regarding the actions that the law enforcement agencies of Ukraine insist on,” he added.
Ukraine says it has raised its flag over Snake Island: The Ukrainian Armed Forces have raised the country’s flag over Snake Island, after forcing a Russian withdrawal from the strategically important territory, a spokeswoman for the military’s Southern Command, 1st Captain Natalia Humeniuk said a briefing on Monday.
The small but strategic territory was the scene of one of the opening salvos of the war in Ukraine, with demands from a Russian warship calling for the Ukrainian defenders to surrender, who boldly replied with “Russian warship, go f*** yourself.”