Published: 10:13, June 6, 2023 | Updated: 11:01, June 6, 2023
Ukraine begins counteroffensive against Russia along frontline
By Xinhua

Ukrainian soldiers ride an APC on the frontline near Bakhmut, Donetsk region, Ukraine on June 5, 2023. (PHOTO / AP)

KIEV / MOSCOW - Ukraine is launching counteroffensive actions against Russia in some areas of the frontline, the Ukrainian deputy defense minister said on Monday.

"In certain directions we are moving to offensive actions," Hanna Maliar wrote in a Telegram post.

The Bakhmut direction remains the epicenter of hostilities, the official said, noting that the Ukrainian military forces have achieved some success in the area.

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The fighting also rages in southern Ukraine, where Russian forces are in the defensive positions, she added.

On Saturday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said his country is prepared to launch a counteroffensive to recapture the territories seized by Russia in the conflict.

In this handout photo taken from a video released by Russian Defense Ministry Press Service on April 14, 2023, a missile armed boat of the Russian Pacific Fleet sails off to take part in naval drills near Vladivostok, Russia. (PHOTO / AP)

Russian drills

Russia kicked off a large-scale naval exercise in the Baltic Sea on Monday to improve combat readiness, its Defense Ministry announced.

The ministry said 40 warships and support vessels, about 3,500 military personnel, and 25 aircraft and helicopters, among others, are involved in the drill until June 15.

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As part of the exercise, Russian forces will practice defending sea lanes and fleet bases, the ministry said.

Two Russian Tu-95MS strategic bombers completed a planned flight over the neutral waters of the Barents and Norwegian seas, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Monday.

The mission lasted for about five hours and the bombers were escorted by MiG-31 aircraft of Russia's Northern Fleet, the ministry said in a statement.

The flights were carried out in strict accordance with international rules for the use of airspace, it added.