Ukraine continues offensive operations in the northeast of the country while Russian forces have established a defensive line between the Oskil River and the town of Svatove, British military intelligence said on Saturday. Follow our live blog for all the latest developments. All times are Paris time (GMT+2).
9:22am: Bodies exhumed from mass grave near Izium: ‘People believe this will not be the only such site’
Bodies exhumed from a mass grave site near the easter Ukrainian town of Izium “showed signs of violent death”, a Ukrainian official said on Friday in what President Volodymyr Zelensky called proof of war crimes by Russian forces.
“So many people are involved in these exhumations and starting these investigations, perhaps also because they believe this will not be the only such site in the liberated territories,” said FRANCE 24 correspondent Gulliver Cragg.
“When you go into the city centre of Izium it becomes all the easier to believe that a large number of people would have been killed in the bombing because people told us it was completely indiscriminate, with airplanes dropping bombs on the city centre.”
8:42am: Russian forces establish defensive line as Ukrainian northeast offensive continues
Ukraine continues its offensive in the northeast while Russia has established a defensive line between the Oskil River and the town of Svatove, protecting one of its few main resupply routes from Russia’s Belgorod region, British military intelligence said on Saturday.
“Russia likely sees maintaining control of this zone as important because it is transited by one of the few main resupply routes Russia still controls from the Belgorod region of Russia,” the defence ministry said in a regular Twitter update.
“Russia will likely attempt to conduct a stubborn defence of this area, but it is unclear whether Russia’s front line forces have sufficient reserves or adequate morale to withstand another concerted Ukrainian assault,” it said.
(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP and REUTERS)