The United States promised more military support for Ukraine, including drones, and is considering whether to send fighter aircraft, as Russian forces relentlessly shelled towns and cities in the east with the war about to enter its sixth month.
Moscow and Kyiv signed a landmark deal on Friday that raised hopes of unblocking vast grain exports from Black Sea ports. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy hailed that accord, but with heavy fighting continuing on several fronts, he said there could be no ceasefire unless lost territory was retaken.
“Freezing the conflict with the Russian Federation means a pause that gives the Russian Federation a break for rest,” he told the Wall Street Journal.
“Society believes that all the territories must be liberated first, and then we can negotiate about what to do and how we could live in the centuries ahead.”
There have been no breakthroughs on the front lines since Russian forces seized the last two Ukrainian-held cities in the eastern province of Luhansk in late June and early July.
Russian forces failed to establish control over Ukraine’s second-biggest power plant at Vuhlehirska, northeast of Donetsk, and troops tried to advance west from the city of Lysychansk but were pushed back, the Ukrainian armed forces’ general staff said.
A number of people were killed and wounded when 13 Russian missiles hit a military airfield and railway infrastructure in the central region of Kirovohrad on Saturday, its governor said. (REUTERS)