Ukraine. Wagner Boss Says Full Takeover of Pakmut • Zelensky Meets World Leaders at G7 Summit in Japan

Ukraine claimed further gains on Friday during counterattacks around the hotly contested eastern city of Pakhmut. On Thursday, the Ukrainian army also managed to advance towards Bakhmut.

“The enemy is continuing its attacks into the city,” the head of the Eastern Armed Forces, Sergei Serevati, told state television.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian troops continue to advance outside the city, putting pressure on Russian soldiers. “The situation in Bachmoet is difficult but under control,” Cherevaty said. “We can see the enemy’s intentions, anticipate them, and prepare for them.”

Russian troops have been trying to capture the strategic city of Bachmut for months, but appear to be losing momentum. They control much of the city, which has been almost completely destroyed, but Ukrainian troops have been advancing from the north and east in recent days to encircle the Russians.

Moscow has moved thousands of troops to Bachmut for reinforcements, Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar said. “The enemy cannot win with quality, so he tries with quantity,” he wrote in a Facebook post. “Russian forces continue to attack with more losses than ours.”

Further south, in the port city of Mariupol, which has been under Russian control since the spring, explosions were heard at the airport on Friday evening, Russian state news agency TASS reported.

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