Ukraine plunges Russian city into darkness after cross-border strikes

Russia: Belgorod residents plunged into darkness

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In footage released on social media, a missile can be seen striking an area in Belgorod and subsequently knocking out the lights. It is believed the attack targeted a central electricity distribution station. The city is located just 40 kilometres from the Ukrainian eastern border and around 80km from Kharkiv, near where Ukraine is believed to be staging counter-offensives. 

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky reported “good news” from the front near Kharkiv, saying some settlements had been recaptured as both sides reported heavy fighting in the region. 

Ukraine remained guarded about its counter-offensive in the east but presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych, in a video posted on YouTube, said Ukrainian troops had surprised Russian defenders at Balakleya.

“The Russians are saying that Balakleya is encircled when in fact (our troops) have gone much further … they’ve cut off the road to Kupyansk,” he said, referring to the main transport hub supplying Russian forces in Izyum to the east.

A pro-Russian official from the region, Rodion Miroshnik, said on Telegram that Balakleya remained in Russian hands although there was fighting north of the town.

The battlefield accounts could not be verified but Yuri Podolyak, a Ukrainian often quoted by pro-Russian officials, also said Russian troops were surprised by the Ukrainian advance.

“The enemy had considerable success near Balakleya with a relatively small force … It would appear that Russian forces slept through this advance and were expecting it elsewhere,” he wrote on Telegram.

“Everything would seem to depend now on the speed with which reserves are brought into the fight … there have been significant losses.”

Asked about the war’s progress at the forum in Vladivostok, Russian President Vladimir Putin said: “We have not lost anything and will not lose anything.”

Russian forces overnight fired rockets and heavy artillery into towns in several districts, killing seven civilians, wounding others and damaging more than a dozen houses and buildings, local Ukrainian authorities said on Thursday.

“The night was full of alarms and shelling,” Zaporizhzhia’s regional governor Valentyn Reznichenko wrote on Telegram. 

He said at least 11 houses and other buildings were damaged, but there were no reports of injuries.

In the Kharkiv region, five people were hospitalised and in Donetsk seven were killed, said regional officials.


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Meanwhile, Putin said in a speech on Wednesday to an economic forum in Russia’s Far East that Russia would not lose what he calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine.

He threatened to halt all supplies of energy to Europe if Brussels went ahead with its proposed price cap on Russian gas, the latest Western step to deprive the Kremlin of funds to finance the war.

“We will not supply gas, oil, coal, heating oil – we will not supply anything” if that occurs, he said. 

Europe usually imports about 40 percent of its gas and 30 percent of its oil from Russia.


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