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UK intelligence thinks Russia fired senior commanders who ‘performed poorly’


Destruction in Severodonetsk, Ukraine on May 19. (Serhii Hayday/Telegram)

Ukrainian military officials said 12 people were killed in the eastern Luhansk region and 60 properties destroyed by Russian shelling on Thursday.

But, they note, Russian forces do not appear to have made progress on the main front lines in Luhansk and Donetsk over the past day.

Civilian deaths: The 12 people were killed in the city of Severodonetsk, according to the head of the military administration of Lugansk, Serhii Hayday.

Hayday said many homes were destroyed throughout the area.

Holding lines: Despite heavy shelling, the Ukrainians claim their defensive lines are holding. “The assault on Severodonetsk failed. The Russians suffered personnel casualties and withdrew,” Hayday said.

State of the city: Oleksandr Striuk, head of the military administration of the city of Severodonetsk, said up to 15,000 civilians remained in the city, living in bomb shelters and basements.

“The city has been without electricity, internet and communication for almost a week now,” he said. “About 70% of the city’s housing stock was destroyed.”

The Russians push: South of Severodonetsk, Russian forces tried to break through around the town of Toshkivka, according to the Ukrainian General Staff.

In their efforts to complete the capture of Luhansk, the Russians also attempted to push towards the small town of Vyskryva. If successful, they would also be closer to another objective: the town of Bakhmut in Donetsk, which has become a hub for the Ukrainian army trying to resupply its defensive positions.

On the Donetsk front, the continued bombardment of settlements north of Sloviansk.

Further north, in the Kharkiv region, where Ukrainian forces have launched a counter-offensive in recent weeks, Russian shelling of areas recaptured by Ukrainian forces continues, according to the Ukrainian army. The city itself has seen far fewer incoming fires.


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