RFE/RL's Live Briefing gives you all of the latest developments on Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Western military aid to Kyiv, worldwide reaction, and the plight of civilians and refugees. For all of RFE/RL's coverage of the war, click here.
Latest Developments At A Glance
- Ukraine's Security Service says it intercepted telephone communications between Russian military personnel that "confirm" Moscow's involvement in the destruction of the Kakhovka dam as Norway's seismological institute said it had detected a possible "explosion" around the time of the dam's breaching.
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has visited the southern region of Kherson where rescue teams are working to save thousands of people trapped by catastrophic flooding caused by the rupture of a major dam on the Dnieper River as Russian shelling nearby further frays residents' nerves.
- Russian Colonel Roman Vinivitin, who was captured by Wagner fighters in eastern Ukraine issued a video on June 8 accusing the private mercenary company of abducting Russian armed forces personnel and torturing them.
- Britain announced new sanctions against Belarus on June 8 in its latest punishment for the country's support of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
- Russia's Defense Ministry claims a Ukrainian "saboteur group" blew up a segment of the Tolyatti-Odesa pipeline, the world's largest ammonia conduit, in Ukraine's Kharkiv region.
- Germany is preparing to host the biggest air deployment exercise in NATO’s history, a show of force intended to impress allies and potential adversaries such as Russia
- A local official in the Russian city of Vladimir, 200 kilometers east of Moscow, was detained on June 7 after she threw Molotov cocktails at a military recruitment center.
Ukraine Goes On The Offensive, Trying To Turn The Tide Of Battle -- Once And For All
Attacking on at least three fronts, Ukraine has launched its long-awaited counteroffensive, seeking to rewrite the course of the 15-month-old Russian invasion and prove to the West that its forces can -- and should -- fight on. Read the report by Mike Eckel here.
After The Flood: What Do We Know About The Destroyed Ukrainian Dam And Its Consequences?
The collapse of the Nova Kakhovka dam sent torrents of water flooding through Ukraine's southern Dnieper River basin, prompting evacuations and inundating thousands of hectares of land. Among other consequences, it could cause the biggest environmental disaster of Russia’s full-scale invasion. Read the report by Mike Eckel here.
Who Is Flying Military-Grade Drones Over Moscow?
The drones that slammed into buildings and hit other locations in Moscow this week were the second batch to rattle the Russian capital in a month. It's still not clear who's behind them, and what the goal is. Here's what we know. Read the report by Mike Eckel here.
How Do We Prevent A Black-Swan Event In Ukraine?
The sooner Ukraine defeats Russia on the battlefield, the less likely there is the risk of a so-called black swan event "such as a tactical nuclear weapon used by Russia," says Dan Rice, a former special adviser to the head of Ukraine's armed forces. Read the interview by Vazha Tavberidze here.
Apart From Wagner, Who Are The Other Russian Mercenary Groups Fighting In Ukraine?
The Wagner Group is by far the most notorious Russian mercenary company, its soldiers having played visible roles in conflict, chaos, and commerce from Africa to Ukraine, where they have led Russia's long, bloody push to take Bakhmut. But Wagner is not Russia's only private military company. Read the report by Mark Krutov, Sergei Dobrynin, and RFE/RL's Idel.Realities here.
'Combat Reconnaissance': What's Behind The Second Incursion Into Russia?
A reserve colonel in the Ukrainian armed forces says that fighting in Russia's Belgorod region was a "combat reconnaissance mission" launched by units of Russian citizens that have been fighting on Kyiv's side since 2014. The Ukrainian government has said it has nothing to do with the incident. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on May 23 that the attack was launched by "Ukrainian fighters." A similar armed incursion took place in March in Russia's Bryansk region.