- Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy tells a UK newspaper that a stalemate with Russia is “not an option”.
- Russia’s Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu claims 97 percent of the Luhansk region, one of the two provinces that make up Ukraine’s Donbas, is under Russian control.
- Shoigu adds Russian forces have fully “liberated” the residential quarters of Severodonetsk.
- Ukrainian official states some 600 Ukrainians are being held captive and tortured in the Russia-occupied southern region of Kherson.
- More than 1,000 Ukrainian soldiers who surrendered in the city of Mariupol have been transferred to Russia for investigation, Tass state news agency cites a Russian law enforcement source as saying.
These are Al Jazeera’s latest updates of the war in Ukraine.
Zelenskyy says Russians had day of no gains
Zelenskyy says Russian forces have made no significant advances in the eastern Donbas region over the past day, despite the fact the Russian defence minister said that Moscow’s forces now control 90 percent of the Luhansk region.
In his nightly video address, Zelenskyy said that “the absolutely heroic defence of the Donbas continues.”
He said the Russians clearly did not expect to meet so much resistance and are now trying to bring in additional troops and equipment. He said the same was true in the southern Kherson region, which Russian troops occupied early in the war.
Zelenskyy also said Ukraine was planning to release a special “Book of Executioners” next week with confirmed information about war crimes committed by the Russian army. He said those named would include not only those who carried out war crimes but their commanders.
More than 1,000 Ukrainian prisoners sent to Russia for investigation: Tass
More than 1,000 Ukrainian soldiers who surrendered in the city of Mariupol have been transferred to Russia for investigation, the Tass state news agency has cited a Russian law enforcement source as saying.
Later on, more Ukrainian prisoners will be transferred to Russia, the source told Tass. Ukraine has said it is working for all the prisoners to be returned while some Russian legislators say they should be put on trial.
Yellen says ‘impossible’ to insulate US from oil market shocks
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has said it is “virtually impossible” for the United States to insulate itself from oil market shocks such as those caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, so it is important to shift towards renewable energy sources.
Yellen told the Senate Finance Committee that US oil producers failed to anticipate the recovery in demand and prices following the COVID-19 pandemic, but they now have incentives to increase production.
World Bank board approves $1.49bn in new funds for Ukraine
The World Bank has said its board of executive directors approved $1.49bn of additional financing for Ukraine to help pay wages for government and social workers, expanding the bank’s total pledged support for Kyiv to more than $4bn.
The World Bank said in a statement that the latest round of funding for Ukraine is supported by financing guarantees from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Lithuania and Latvia. The project is also being supported by parallel financing from Italy and contributions from a new Multi-Donor Trust Fund.
‘Don’t blame myself’ for not trying hard enough for Ukraine: Merkel
Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she tried hard when she was in office to prevent the situation in Ukraine from developing to the current state, adding that she does not blame herself for not trying hard enough.
“It’s a great sadness that it didn’t work out, but I don’t blame myself for not trying,” said Merkel, speaking of the 2014 Minsk agreement with Russia. She spoke in an interview with German journalist and author Alexander Osang televised by broadcaster ARD.
Merkel said there was no justification for Russia’s “brutal disregard of international law” in Ukraine, adding that she had been against a plan to let Ukraine into NATO because she wanted to prevent escalation with Russia and Ukraine was not ready for such membership.
Russia returns bodies of 210 Ukrainian fighters to Kyiv: Military
Russia has handed over to Kyiv the bodies of 210 Ukrainian fighters, most of whom died defending the city of Mariupol from Russian forces at a vast steelworks, the Ukrainian military said.
“The process of returning the bodies of the fallen defenders of Mariupol is under way. To date, 210 of our troops have been returned – most of them are heroic defenders of Azovstal,” Ukraine’s defence intelligence directorate said on Twitter.
❗ Зусиллями Координаційного штабу з питань поводження з військовополоненими триває процес повернення тіл загиблих захисників Маріуполя.
▪ На сьогодні вже вдалося повернути 210 наших військових. Більшість з них – героїчні оборонці «Азовсталі». pic.twitter.com/dfsV8Y5DTG
— Defence intelligence of Ukraine (@DI_Ukraine) June 7, 2022
Stalemate with Russia ‘not an option’: Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Zelenskyy has told Britain’s Financial Times newspaper that a stalemate with Russia is “not an option”.
“Victory must be achieved on the battlefield”, he said as he repeated his call for Western military support.
“We are inferior in terms of equipment and therefore we are not capable of advancing,” he told the paper. “We are going to suffer more losses and people are my priority.”
Zelenskyy said restoring the borders Ukraine controlled before Russia’s invasion on February 24 would be “a serious temporary victory”.
But he said the ultimate aim was the “full de-occupation of our entire territory”.
Ukrainian forces finding it difficult to hold Severodonestk centre: Governor
Ukrainian forces are finding it hard to stave off Russian attacks in the centre of Severodonestk, but Moscow’s forces do not control the city, the governor of Luhansk region has said.
In an online post, Serhiy Haidai also said Russian troops were constantly shelling Severodonetsk’s twin city Lysychansk, which lies across the Siverskyi Donets river.
Lavrov in Turkey for talks on Ukraine grain exports
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has arrived in Ankara for a two-day visit to Turkey for talks on unblocking grain exports from Ukraine.
This is Lavrov’s second trip to Turkey after meeting his Turkish and Ukrainian counterparts Mevlut Cavusoglu and Dmytro Kuleba in Antalya on March 10.
Welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the Russia-Ukraine war.
Read all the updates from Tuesday, June 7, here.