Ukraine’s resistance in the embattled city of Sievjerodonetsk is increasingly successful. Large parts of the town in the Luhansk Oblast could be recaptured, Russian troops were pushed back to the eastern edge of the city. Sergei Haidai, chairman of the Luhansk regional administration, said 70 percent of the city was back under control.

According to Russian media, Ukrainian troops apparently also killed Russian Major General Roman Kutuzov, commander of a combat battalion of the “Donetsk People’s Republic”, with an air strike. Kutuzov would be the seventh Russian general to be killed in Ukraine since the war began.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited the cities of Lysychansk and Soledar, just a few kilometers south of the embattled city of Sievarodonetsk, on Sunday. Two recorded videos broadcast on Sunday show Zelenskyy talking to soldiers in bunker-like buildings and presenting awards. “You all deserved the win – that’s the most important thing. But not at any price,” says Zelenskyj in one of the videos.

The President’s Office in Kyiv said that during his working visit to Donbass, Zelenskyi “acquainted himself with the operational situation on the front line of defense”. “I’m proud of everyone I met, shook hands with, exchanged ideas with, supported,” said Zelenskyy in his evening speech after the visit.

According to the President, he also visited the city of Zaporizhia in south-eastern Ukraine and spoke to refugees from the badly damaged city of Mariupol. Mostly it is women and children without their husbands and fathers.

“One’s husband went to war, one was captured, one died unfortunately,” said Zelenskyy. “But we have to go on living for the children. True heroes – they are among us.”

Selenskyj was last on the front line at the end of May. The Russian head of state Vladimir Putin, on the other hand, has not yet visited his troops in the Ukraine war.

Despite warnings from Putin, Britain wants to supply longer-range missile systems to Ukraine. Specifically, these are M270 artillery pieces that can fire M31-A1 missiles up to 80 kilometers away. They are intended to be used primarily as a defensive weapon against Russian artillery in eastern Ukraine. Britain stressed that Ukraine had guaranteed not to use the weapons on Russian soil.

Putin said on Sunday that Russia would use “means of destruction” to hit objects it “has not hitherto attacked” if Ukraine received longer-range missile systems. It was initially unclear whether Putin was referring to new targets inside or outside Ukraine’s borders.

Western arms supplies aim to prolong the armed conflict for as long as possible, Putin claimed. He was alluding to US plans to supply Kyiv with multiple rocket launcher systems, among other things.