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Russia Claims Capture of Village in Ukraine's Donetsk Region

Eastern Ukraine Russian Defence Ministry/TASS

Russia's Defense Ministry claimed on Sunday to have captured a tiny village in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, where it has been on the offensive making territorial gains.

Russian troops "have managed to liberate the village of Umanskoye in the People’s republic of Donetsk", the ministry said in reference to the Ukrainian village of Umanske.

Umanske is a tiny village that had fewer than 180 inhabitants before Russia launched its military offensive in Ukraine in February 2022.

It lies about 25 kilometers (15 miles) to the northwest of Donetsk, which is the main city of the region and is under Russian control.

Russian Defence Minister Andrei Belousov said on Friday Russia had made advances "in all tactical directions".

Moscow's forces had seized 880 square kilometers (340 square miles) of territory this year alone, he said.

Ukraine's outnumbered and outgunned forces have been under pressure for several months, particularly since Russia launched a new push in early May around the eastern city of Kharkiv, the second largest in Ukraine.

Russian soldiers have also been pushing hard in the east towards Pokrovsk, a city around 30 kilometers northwest of Umanske.

Kyiv hopes the imminent delivery of Western munitions it has long been waiting for will allow its troops to regain the upper hand on the battlefield.

Likewise, U.S. President Joe Biden's decision to allow Kyiv to use American-supplied weapons to strike certain targets inside Russia has provided Ukraine with a significant boost.

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