Russia-Ukraine war: Ukraine’s forces launch attacks in occupied Kherson; UN nuclear team arrives in Kyiv – live news | Russia

Key events

Russia claims Ukrainian offensive ‘failed miserably’

Russia’s defence ministry acknowledged a new Ukrainian offensive had been launched in the Mykolaiv and Kherson regions but said it had failed and the Ukrainians had suffered significant casualties, RIA news agency reported.

The “enemy’s offensive attempt failed miserably,” it said.

However, officials at the Russian-appointed local authority later told the outlet that a Ukrainian barrage of rockets left the Russian-occupied town of Nova Kakhovka just east of the city of Kherson without water or power.

The battlefield reports could not be independently verified.

Kyiv’s forces break through Russian defences near Kherson city

Kyiv’s forces have reportedly broken through Russian defences in several sectors of the frontline near the city of Kherson, a senior adviser to Zelenskiy has claimed.

“I should note today the (Russian) defences were broken through in a few hours,” Oleksiy Arestovych said in a video interview on Youtube.

A spokesperson for Ukraine’s southern command, Nataliya Humenyuk, said Ukraine’s forces had struck more than 10 sites in the past week and “unquestionably weakened the enemy” during a Monday briefing.

Humenyuk declined to give details, saying Russian forces in the south remained “quite powerful” and that the operation needed “silence” as media attention could affect the results. Her claims could not be independently corroborated.

Oleksandr Shulga stands in front of his destroyed house following a missile strike in Mykolaiv on 29 August.
Oleksandr Shulga stands in front of his destroyed house following a missile strike in Mykolaiv on 29 August. Photograph: Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty Images

Sergiy Khlan, a local deputy and adviser to the regional governor told Ukraine’s Pryamyi TV channel on Monday:

Today there was a powerful artillery attack on enemy positions in … the entire territory of the occupied Kherson region.

This is the announcement of what we have been waiting for since the spring – it is the beginning of the end of the occupation of Kherson region.”

“What is happening now is a prepared, well-balanced start of a counteroffensive,” Khlan told Agence France-Presse.

A seperate Ukrainian military source told CNN that its forces have taken back four villages near the city of Kherson after breaking through the frontline in three places, with the main “target” being Kherson. The operation began with heavy shelling of Russian positions and the rear, forcing them to flee, the source was quoted as saying.

Ukrainian forces were also reportedly shelling the ferries in the Kherson region that Moscow is using to supply Russian-occupied territory on the west bank of the Dnieper river.

Ukraine mounts counteroffensive in Kherson

Ukrainian troops are mounting a long-awaited counteroffensive in the southern region of Kherson, military officials have said.

Ukraine’s southern command spokesperson, Natalia Humeniuk, said on Monday:

Today we started offensive actions in various directions, including in the Kherson region.”

The military official declined to provide more details about the new offensive but said Ukraine’s recent strikes on Russia’s southern logistical routes had “unquestionably weakened the enemy”.

Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, did not address the counteroffensive specifically during his Monday evening address but said:

If they want to survive, it is time for the Russian military to flee. The occupiers should know: we will oust them to the border. To our border, the line of which has not changed.”

Those who surrendered would be treated under the Geneva conventions, he said, adding: “If they do not listen to me, they will deal with our defenders, who will not stop until they liberate everything that belongs to Ukraine.”

“Ukraine is returning its own. It will return the Kharkiv region, Luhansk region, Donetsk region, Zaporizhzhia region, Kherson region, Crimea … This will happen.”

Summary and welcome

Hello and welcome back to the Guardian’s live coverage of the war in Ukraine.

I’m Samantha Lock and I will be bringing you all the latest developments for the next short while. Whether you’ve been following our coverage overnight or you’ve just dropped in, here are the latest lines.

The UN nuclear watchdog has assembled a team that is en route to visit Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant this week, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief, Rafael Grossi, said. “We must protect the safety and security of Ukraine’s and Europe’s biggest nuclear facility,” he added.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian troops are mounting a long-awaited counteroffensive in the southern region of Kherson, military officials have said.

It is 7.30am in Kyiv. Here is where we stand:

  • Ukrainian troops are mounting a long-awaited counteroffensive in the southern region of Kherson, military officials have said. “Today we started offensive actions in various directions, including in the Kherson region,” Ukraine’s southern command spokesperson, Natalia Humeniuk, said on Monday. She declined to provide more details about the new offensive but said Ukraine’s recent strikes on Russia’s southern logistical routes had “unquestionably weakened the enemy”. Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, added in a Monday evening address: “If they want to survive, it is time for the Russian military to flee. The occupiers should know: we will oust them to the border. To our border, the line of which has not changed.”

  • Kyiv’s forces have broken through Russian defences in several sectors of the frontline near the city of Kherson, a senior adviser to Zelenskiy claimed. Oleksiy Arestovych said Ukrainian forces were also shelling the ferries in the Kherson region that Moscow is using to supply Russian-occupied territory on the west bank of the Dnieper river. A seperate Ukrainian military source told CNN that its forces have taken back four villages near the city of Kherson after breaking through the frontline in three places, with the main “target” being Kherson. The operation began with heavy shelling of Russian positions and the rear, forcing them to flee, the source was quoted as saying.

  • A Ukrainian barrage of rockets left the Russian-occupied town of Nova Kakhovka in the Kherson region without water or power, officials at the Russian-appointed local authority told Russia’s RIA news agency. The town lies just to the east of the city of Kherson.

  • A team of inspectors from the UN nuclear watchdog arrived in Kyiv on Monday night en route to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief, Rafael Grossi, said a team will visit the plant from Wednesday to Saturday. “We must protect the safety and security of Ukraine’s and Europe’s biggest nuclear facility,” Grossi tweeted. Missiles and shells are frequently hitting areas around the power station and nearby towns, prompting fears it may be too dangerous for the mission to proceed.

  • The Kremlin said the IAEA mission was “necessary” but has ruled out vacating the site. Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said Ukraine expects the IAEA delegation to “state the facts” regarding the violation of all nuclear safety protocols, adding that Russia “is putting not only Ukraine but also the entire world at threat of risk of a nuclear accident”.

  • Russian forces fired at Enerhodar, the city where the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is located, according to Ukraine’s armed forces. Zelenskiy’s chief of staff, Andriy Yermak, also appeared to confirm the reports on his Telegram channel alongside a video of firefighters dousing burning cars.

  • Russia is struggling to find more soldiers to fight in Ukraine and has expanded recruitment efforts by eliminating the upper age limit and by tapping into prisons. “Many of these new recruits have been observed as older, unfit and ill-trained,” a Pentagon official told journalists on Monday. Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, decreed last week that his army would increase by about 10%, to 1.15 million servicemen, starting January next year.

  • Ukrainian officials have warned politicians, experts and opinion leaders not to speculate about the progress of a military counteroffensive. Spokesperson for Ukraine’s southern command, Nataliya Humenyuk, said the operation in Kherson needed “silence” as media attention could affect the results. Ukraine’s presidential adviser, Mykhailo Podolyak, added it was necessary to wait for official statements from Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence and army. “I understand our wishes and dreams … But war is not ‘content’. Let’s filter information and work professionally out of respect for our defenders,” he wrote on Telegram.

  • Gas shortages across Europe are likely to last for several winters to come, the chief executive of Shell has said, raising the prospect of continued energy rationing as governments push to develop alternative supplies. Speaking at a press conference in Norway on Monday, Ben van Beurden said the situation could persist for several years.

  • Western technology companies, including Ericsson and Nokia announced plans for complete exits from Russia on Monday, following Dell’s withdrawal last week.

Russia’s war in Ukraine: latest developments
Russia’s war in Ukraine: latest developments

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