In Russian-occupied regions in Ukraine, local leaders are forcing civilians to accept Russian rule. Next come sham elections that would formalize Vladimir V. Putin’s claim that they are Russian territories.
Russia is moving “maximum” forces to the south, which presents a role reversal from the eastern Donbas region: Ukraine is on the offensive and Russians holding a key city risk being cut off.
With soldiers, artillery and subversives, Ukraine has been laying the groundwork to retake Kherson, which Russia has held for months. But a counterattack would require huge resources, and could come at a heavy toll.
Pushing back against skepticism that Western weapons will allow them to turn the tide against Russia, Ukrainians point to successful attacks using new long-range rocket systems.
A top Russian official said Moscow may extend its territorial claims to include not just the east of Ukraine but also parts of the south.
Attacks on a strategically important bridge and other Russian positions in the Kherson Province over the last two days raise a question: Is Ukraine preparing a larger counteroffensive?
The Russians’ growing use of imprecise Soviet-era missiles to terrorize civilians reflects the daunting outlook of its offensive despite incremental gains, analysts say.
With the withdrawal from Sievierodonetsk, the fighting shifts to neighboring Lysychansk, the last city in the Luhansk region still under Ukrainian control.
A nascent insurgency made up of civilians or former soldiers provided information that aided Ukraine’s attack on two Russian bases, according to a senior Ukrainian military official.
Soldiers desperate for advanced arms to match their Russian enemies have resorted to Google Translate to decipher the instructions for their sophisticated new tools.
“Hold on, Kherson, we’re coming!” the Ukrainian military declared as it pushed to retake territory in a key southern city.
The territory occupied by Russian forces so far in the three-month-old invasion deserves “a worthy place in our Russian family,” a Kremlin official who toured the region said.
Although Russian forces failed to take Kyiv, they have captured large chunks of the south and east, giving Moscow a chance to strangle the country economically.
Besides their military failures, the Russians entered the war believing they could persuade Ukrainians in the east to join their side. Those efforts have failed spectacularly.
The Russian invasion is pummeling Ukraine’s agriculture, threatening harvests in Europe’s breadbasket and contributing to a global food crisis.
A U.S. official said Ukrainian forces were fighting fiercely in the city, but Ukrainian and Russian officials disagreed.
Despite a cease-fire, Russia shelled near humanitarian corridors meant for civilians to escape an embattled city, Ukraine says, while the Russian leader also warned about a no-fly zone.
About two-thirds of Ukraine’s population of 44 million people lived in cities before Russia’s invasion began. Now many urban areas are in the cross hairs of war.