Russian forces reportedly pounded private buildings and port infrastructure along Ukraine’s Black Sea coast on Tuesday as one Moscow-backed official pledged the region would soon be “liberated.”
Strikes that targeted Odessa and Mykolaiv have continued despite last week’s agreement to allow grain shipments to resume out of its Black Sea ports.
Russia had previously claimed its Odessa siege was focused on military targets, including anti-ship weapons and a warship.
Ukraine’s use of anti-ship missiles is seen as a threat to Russia’s strategy in Odessa, according to the British ministry.
“This has significantly undermined the overall invasion plan, as Russia cannot realistically attempt an amphibious assault to seize Odesa,” the ministry said. “Russia will continue to prioritize efforts to degrade and destroy Ukraine’s anti-ship capability.”
Tuesday’s assault on Black Sea regions was from long-range Tu-22M3 bombers and Russian fighter jets, according to a Ukraine air force spokesperson.
A Moscow-installed official in the region said the area would soon be under Russian control like the occupied Kherson region.
“The Kherson region and the city of Kherson have been liberated forever,” said Kirll Stremousov, according to the Russian state news agency RIUA Novosti.
Ukraine officials said Russia’s offensive killed at least three civilians and injured eight others overall in the last day, according to President Volodymyr Zelensky’s office. The governor of Ukraine’s second-largest city, Kharkiv, accused Russia of intentionally targeting sites like hospitals, schools and movie theaters.
“Everything is being fired at, even queues for humanitarian aid, so we’re urging people to avoid mass gatherings,” Gov. Oleh Syniehubov told local media Tuesday, urging residents to evacuate.
There was also an unconfirmed report claiming that Ukrainian strikes killed a Moldovan citizen at a border checkpoint in the Bryansk region of Russia.
Moscow officials said publicly the country is ready to hold diplomatic talks of ending the war, even though efforts went cold after a March meeting between the sides in Istanbul.
With Post wires