New footage shows Ukrainian troops obliterating a Russian tank and two infantry fighting vehicles using British M777 howitzers.
Aerial footage purports to show the 81st Airmobile Brigade using the long-range weapons to target the vehicles.
The Command of the Assault Troops of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said: ‘Gunners of the 81st Brigade of the DShV [Ukrainian Air Assault Forces] destroyed one tank and two infantry fighting vehicles of the Russian invaders.
‘The video shows the successful work of artillery soldiers of the 81st Airmobile Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine who, using British M777 155-mm field howitzers, destroyed equipment and manpower of the racists.
‘In particular, one tank and two infantry fighting vehicles of the Russian occupiers – along with their crews – were turned into scrap metal. Death to the Russian occupiers! DShV – Always First! Glory to Ukraine!’
It is the latest blow to Russian forces who have suffered heavy losses to personnel and military hardware in their costly four-month invasion.
Ukraine claims Russia has lost 33,800 personnel, 1,477 tanks, 3,588 armoured combat vehicles, 749 artillery units, 235 multiple launch rocket systems, 98 air defence systems, 216 warplanes, 181 helicopters, 601 drones, 130 cruise missiles, 14 warships, 2,527 motor vehicles and fuel tankers, and 55 units of special equipment.
On the battlefield, Russian forces are trying to take complete control of the eastern Donbas region, parts of which were already held by Russian-backed separatists before the February 24 invasion.
It comes as Ukraine is nervously awaiting a historic decision from the EU on its bid to become a member state, with Volodymyr Zelesnky fearing it could lead to an increase in Russian ‘hostile activity’ this week.
Ukrainian troops have shelled a Russian tank and two infantry fighting vehicles using British M777 howitzers which blew up the Kremlin machinery into a huge fireball
Aerial footage purports to show members of Ukraine’s 81st Airmobile Brigade using the long-range weapons to target the vehicles
The Command of the Assault Troops of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said Kyiv’s forces had reduced Russian armoured vehicles to ‘scrap metal’ following the attack
The destruction is the latest blow to Russian forces who have suffered heavy losses to personnel and military hardware in their costly four-month invasion
Footage purporting to show Russian tanks being destroyed appeared as Ukraine is nervously awaiting a historic decision from the EU on its bid to become a member state, with Volodymyr Zelesnky fearing it could lead to an increase in Russian ‘hostile activity’ this week
Separate footage also purports to show the moment Ukrainian troops shelled a Russian tank and two infantry fighting vehicles using British M777 howitzers which blew up the Kremlin machinery into a huge fireball
Russia becomes China’s biggest oil supplier after Beijing increased imports by 55 per cent to capitalise on low prices
It displaced Saudi Arabia as China’s biggest provider after a 55 per cent increase over the past year allowed the Chinese state to capitalise on low prices brought about by western countries refusing to buy oil from Russia.
Russian oil exports to China totalled nearly 8.42million tonnes in the month of May, nudging out Saudi Arabia which exported 7.82million tonnes to China.
Chinese state giants Sinopec and Zhenhua Oil have increased their purchases of Russian crude in recent months, refining the oil and selling it on.
Discounts of up to 30 per cent have undermined western sanctions and sparked fears that Russia will continue to find funding for its war in Ukraine.
Last week, the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air think tank said Russia earned almost $100bn in revenue from fossil fuel exports in the first 100 days of the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
The European Union made up 61 per cent of these imports, worth approximately $59bn.
Oil prices have risen by more than 60 per cent over the past 12 months, topping $112 a barrel for international benchmark crude as of Monday.
A prime target of Moscow’s eastern assault is the industrial city of Sievierodonetsk.
Russia said on Sunday it had seized Metyolkine, a village on the outskirts, and Russian state news agency TASS reported that many Ukrainian fighters had surrendered there.
Ukraine’s military said Russia had ‘partial success’ in the area.
Luhansk Governor Serhiy Gaidai told Ukrainian TV that a Russian attack on Toshkivka, 20 miles south of Sievierodonetsk, also ‘had a degree of success.’
In Sievierodonetsk itself, a city of 100,000 before the war, Gaidai said Russia controlled ‘the main part’ but not the entire town after intense fighting. Reuters could not independently confirm the battlefield accounts.
Both Russia and Ukraine have continued heavy bombardment around Sievierodonetsk ‘with little change to the front line’, Britain’s Ministry of Defence said on Sunday.
In Sievierodonetsk’s twin city of Lysychansk, residential buildings and private houses had been destroyed by Russian shelling, Gaidai said. ‘People are dying on the streets and in bomb shelters,’ he added.
He later said 19 people had been evacuated on Sunday. ‘We are managing to bring in humanitarian aid and evacuate people as best we can,’ Gaidai said.
Analysts at the Institute for the Study of War, a Washington-based think tank, wrote in a note that ‘Russian forces will likely be able to seize Sievierodonetsk in the coming weeks, but at the cost of concentrating most of their available forces in this small area.’
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the Ukraine conflict could last for years and urged Western governments to continue sending state-of-the-art weaponry to Ukrainian troops, Germany’s Bild am Sonntag newspaper reported.
‘We must prepare for the fact that it could take years. We must not let up in supporting Ukraine,’ Stoltenberg was quoted as saying.
Russia has said it launched what it calls a ‘special military operation’ to disarm its neighbour and protect Russian speakers there from dangerous nationalists. Kyiv and its allies dismiss that as a baseless pretext for a war of aggression.
The British military assessment said morale for Ukrainian and Russian combat units in the Donbas was likely ‘variable.’
‘Ukrainian forces have likely suffered desertions in recent weeks, however, Russian morale highly likely remains especially troubled. Cases of whole Russian units refusing orders and armed stand-offs between officers and their troops continue to occur,’ the British Ministry of Defence said on Twitter.
Ukrainian soldiers travel down a road near Druzhkivka as Russian forces continue to concentrate their firepower on the Donbas
A family takes a Sunday walk through a neighborhood that was recently damaged by a Russian missile strike
A man removes debris at a local market following recent shelling in the course of Ukraine-Russia conflict in Donetsk
Smoke rises after Russian shelling in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, on Saturday in another round of bombardment
In Ukraine’s second-largest city Kharkiv, northwest of Luhansk, Russia’s defence ministry said its Iskander missiles had destroyed weaponry recently supplied by Western countries.
Russian forces were trying to approach Kharkiv, which experienced intense shelling earlier in the war, and turn it into a ‘frontline city’, a Ukrainian interior ministry official said.
In southern Ukraine, Western weaponry had helped Ukrainian forces advance six miles towards Russian-occupied Melitopol, its mayor said in a video posted on Telegram from outside the city.
An EU decision in favor of Kyiv’s ultimate membership would put Ukraine on track to realise an aspiration that would have been out of reach for the former Soviet republic before the Russian invasion.
‘Whole generations fought for a chance to escape from the prison of the Soviet Union and, like a free bird, to fly to European civilisation,’ the speaker of Ukraine’s parliament, Ruslan Stefanchuk, said in a statement.
President Zelensky said there had been ‘few such fateful decisions for Ukraine’ as the one it expects from the EU this week.
‘Only a positive decision is in the interests of the whole of Europe,’ he said in his evening address Sunday.
‘Obviously, we expect Russia to intensify hostile activity this week… We are preparing. We are ready,’ he continued.
On Friday, Brussels backed Kyiv’s bid for EU candidate status after the heads of the bloc’s biggest members – France, Germany and Italy – paid a visit to the Ukrainian capital.
Ukraine could join the list of countries vying for membership as early as this week, when member state leaders meet at a Brussels summit.
But officials and leaders in the bloc caution that, even with candidacy status, membership could take years.
Volodymyr Zelesnky (pictured in Mykolaiv on Saturday) said there had been ‘few such fateful decisions for Ukraine’ as the one it expects from the EU this week
Firefighters work at the site of fire after Russian shelling in Mykolaiv in Ukraine this weekend after the latest bombardment