Ukraine war: 7 killed in Russian shelling over Kherson region

Ukraine has made only incremental gains since launching a counteroffensive in June

Ukraine Russia war Representational image

Seven people including a 23-day-old baby girl were killed in Russian shelling in Ukraine's southern Kherson region on Sunday, the country's Internal Affairs Ministry said.

Artillery shelling in the village of Shiroka Balka, on the banks of the Dnieper River killed a family a husband, wife, 12-year-old boy and 23-day-old girl and another resident.

Two men were killed in the neighbouring village of Stanislav, where a woman was also wounded.

The attack on Kherson province followed Ukrainian Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar's comments on Saturday attempting to quell rumours that Ukrainian forces had landed on the occupied left (east) bank of the Dnieper in the Kherson region.

"Again, the expert hype around the left bank in the Kherson region began. There are no reasons for excitement," she said.

Kherson regional Governor Oleksandr Prokudin said Sunday that three people had been wounded in Russian attacks on the province on Saturday. Ukrainian military officials said Saturday evening that Kyiv's forces had made progress in the south, claiming some success near a key village in the southern Zaporizhzhia region and capturing other unspecified territories.

Ukraine's General Staff said they had partial success around the tactically important Robotyne area in the Zaporizhzhia region, a key Russian strongpoint that Ukraine needs to retake in order to continue pushing south towards Melitopol.

“There are liberated territories. The defence forces are working,” General Oleksandr Tarnavskyi, commander of Ukraine's southern forces, said of the southern front.

Battles in recent weeks have taken place on multiple points along the over 1,000-kilometre (600-mile) front line as Ukraine wages a counteroffensive with Western-supplied weapons and Western-trained troops against Russian forces who invaded nearly 18 months ago.

Ukrainian troops have made only incremental gains since launching a counteroffensive in early June.

In Russia, local officials reported on Sunday that air defence systems shot down two drones over the Belgorod region and one over the neighbouring Kursk region, both of which border Ukraine.

Ukrainian drone strikes on Russian border regions are a fairly regular occurrence. Drone attacks deeper inside Russian territory have been on the rise since a drone was destroyed over the Kremlin in early May. In recent weeks, attacks have increased both on Moscow and on Crimea, which Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014 a move that most of the world considered illegal.

Firing drones at Russia, after more than 17 months of war, has little apparent military value for Ukraine but the strategy has served to unsettle Russians and bring home to them the conflict's consequences.


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