Putin in round-the-clock connection with military after troops forced to retreat south-east of Kharkiv
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Russia will push on using its invasion of Ukraine until all military goals are met, the Kremlin has said, since it taken care of immediately Kyivs massive counter-offensive in the east, which includes reclaimed a lot more than 3,000 square kilometres of terrain.
The Russian military setback may be the Kremlins biggest because it was forced to U-turn on plans to take the Ukrainian capital and contains resulted in a rising tide of recriminations in Moscow over who’s at fault.
President Vladimir Putin is fully briefed on the relocation of Russian forces, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday. The defence ministry has acknowledged that Russian troops were pulled back the Kharkiv region, but authorities have since avoided calling it a retreat.
The president is in constant, round-the-clock communication with the minister of defence, sufficient reason for all of the military commanders, Peskov said.
Asked if Putin still trusted his military leadership, Peskov replied that the special military operation the name Moscow gives to its invasion of Ukraine will continue, and can continue until all of the goals which were originally set are achieved.
On Monday, Ukrainian troops worked to consolidate gains that they had made since launching the offensive east of Kharkiv. In Izyum, an integral logistics hub where a large number of Russian troops have been stationed, Ukrainian soldiers hoisted the national flag on the central district government building in the primary square.
Nataliya Humenyuk, spokeswoman for Ukraines southern operations command, said on Monday that the countrys forces in the southern Kherson region, where Ukraine initiated a youthful counter-offensive, had also liberated about 500 sq km of territory from Russias forces.
Our progress over the last two weeks is fairly convincing. We’ve advanced in various sections from four to many dozen kilometres. We’ve freed areas about 500 sq km, she said.
Towns liberated included Visokopiylya, Novovoznesenske, Bilohirka, Sukhy Stavok and Myrolyubivka, she said.
Tensions also have risen over artillery strikes at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine, whichKyiv and Moscow blame on one another.
In a telephone call with French president Emmanuel Macron on Sunday, Putin warned of potential catastrophic consequences of what he claimed was Ukrainian shelling targeting the plant. Ukrainian officials say it really is Russian forces which are hitting the facilityas a provocation.
Macron said it had been Russia that has been in charge of tensions at the website and demanded the withdrawal of Moscows forces.
Additional reporting by Ben Hall in London