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Main stories of the day: Russia kills five in Sumy Region, escalation in Bakhmut sector, Ukraine demands Saakashvili's handover

Main stories of the day: Russia kills five in Sumy Region, escalation in Bakhmut sector, Ukraine demands Saakashvili's handover
Photo: Sumy regional military administration

3 July 2023

Sumy Region

Russian attacks with artillery and Shahed-136 attack drones on residential areas in several communities of Sumy Region killed five people and left over 20 more wounded, according to the regional authorities.

The Sumy city authorities declared 4 July the day of mourning for the victims of the attack.


The situation in the Bakhmut sector escalated again, Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Malyar said. Russian troops are actively responding to all actions of Ukrainian troops and creating three lines of defence in areas under threat.

Active hostilities continue in the Bakhmut sector and the threat of a Russian offensive towards the town of Chasiv Yar remains, according to Ukrainian Ground Forces Commander Oleksandr Syrskyy, Ukrayinska Pravda reported.

Russia has more than 180,000 troops in the Lyman-Kupyansk and Bakhmut sectors, including air assault and mechanized units, the spokesperson for the Eastern Group of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Serhiy Cherevatyy, said told the telethon.

Heavy fighting continues in the Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiyivka and Maryinka sectors where over 30 combat engagements have taken place over the day, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said in its evening update.

During the day, Russian troops launched three anti-aircraft guided missiles from the S-300 air defence system and 20 Iranian Shahed strike UAVs against civilian infrastructure facilities in Sumy, Donetsk and Zaporizhzhya regions. Ukrainian defenders destroyed 14 Russian drones.

Russia carried out 44 air strikes and fired about 50 times from multiple launch rocket systems.

Meanwhile, the aviation of the Defence Forces carried out 14 strikes on the clusters of Russian personnel over the day. Missile and artillery units struck two clusters of Russian manpower, weapons and military equipment and five artillery systems at firing positions.

Strike units supplied by the Army of Drones destroyed 75 pieces of Russian military hardware over the past week, Ukrainian Digital Transformation Minister Mykhaylo Fedorov said. Among the destroyed vehicles are nine tanks, four self-propelled artillery systems and 27 armoured combat vehicles.

Dozens of Leopard 1 A5 battle tanks provided by Germany and Denmark will be delivered to Ukraine in the coming weeks, German Defence Minister Boris Pistroius said in an interview with Rzeczpospolita.

Air defence

Ukrainian air shield can become the basis of the European one, it is possible, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video address. "It is obvious that Europe can be protected from any aggression only together with Ukraine and only together with Ukraine in NATO," he argued.


President Zelenskyy had a "long and fruitful" telephone conversation with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to coordinate their positions ahead of the NATO summit in Vilnius and discuss the formats of future security guarantees for Ukraine.

The decision on President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's attendance of the NATO summit in Vilnius has not yet been made, everything will depend on the situation on the battlefield, according to his press secretary Serhiy Nykyforov. When made, the decision will not be announced in advance for security reasons


Vladimir Putin's response to the armed Wagner rebellion was "weak" and the Russian President is losing control of his own people, President Zelenskyy told CNN in an exclusive interview.


President Zelenskyy has called on the Georgian authorities to hand over Ukrainian citizen Mikheil Saakashvili to Ukraine for treatment after a video was released showing the detained former Georgian president looking exhausted, scrawny and fragile. Zelenskyy instructed the Foreign Ministry to summon the Georgian ambassador, protest to him and suggest that he leave the country within 48 hours for consultations with Tbilisi.

Nuclear safety

The Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant has been connected to backup power line for the first time in four months, the IAEA said. But the situation with power supply remains extremely fragile.

Ukrainian Army Commander-in-Chief Gen Valeriy Zaluzhnyy and General Staff Chief Lt-Gen Serhiy Shaptala visited the Rivne NPP to coordinate "information exchange between the army and power engineers to analyse, plan and forecast possible scenarios for the development of events at the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant", the General Staff said.

Evacuation from territories that may be affected by a terrorist attack at the ZNPP will be free of charge, Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Iryna Vereshchuk said.


The State Audit Service's findings of irregularities in the Ministry of Defence's contracts worth UAH 2.5 billion have created huge problems for both the Ukrainian army and Ukrainian business. In this audit, the violations include the profits that private and state-owned companies have made by cooperating with the Defence Ministry, its head Oleksiy Reznikov said in an article for Forbes.

The Lychakivskyy court in Lviv has selected a measure of pre-trial restraint for MP Serhiy Alekseyev (European Solidarity), who is accused of offering a foreigner "protection" from extradition for a reward of $50,000, Suspilne reported. The court placed him in custody with an option to deposit bail of over UAH 2.2 million.

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