Russian forces continue to shell the city of Lysychansk and settlements to the south and west of the city as they try to cut off a main highway, according to Ukrainian officials.
Serhiy Hayday, head of the Luhansk regional military administration, said on Monday that Lysychansk was being attacked from the south and was heavily damaged.
Villages in the surrounding area were also being shelled, he said. Three settlements to the west and southwest of the city, close to the highway to Bakhmut, were under fire.
“The Russians do not stop destroying housing, industrial and administrative facilities. There is no hour when the enemy artillery calms down,” Hayday said.
“They are trying to blockade the city from the south. We are defending Lysychansk.”
Further west: Russian efforts to encircle the troops defending Lysychansk continued with artillery attacks and an attempted ground assault northwards towards Bakhmut, which the Ukrainian military’s General Staff said had been repulsed.
Sloviansk: The General Staff said on Monday that heavy shelling persisted in many areas and the Russians had made minor advances north of the city of Sloviansk, a key target in their offensive operation.
It said that in the Sloviansk direction, the Russians were concentrating efforts on taking the village of Dolnya and were advancing toward another village in the area. This rural area near the Siverskyi Donets river has seen constant fighting for well over a month but the Russians have been unable to make a breakthrough towards Sloviansk.
Chernihiv: Elsewhere, cross-border shelling has continued in the Chernihiv region, according to the General Staff, and there has been an airstrike against Slavhorod in Sumy region.
Kharkiv: The Russians have used tanks, artillery and mortars to shell areas north of the city of Kharkiv, but an assault on the ground near the settlement of Dementiivka — 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Kharkiv — failed, the General Staff said.