All the latest developments from the war in Ukraine.
Russia bruised but unbowed, says NATO officer
Russia’s armed forces are bruised but by no means beaten in the war in Ukraine, a top NATO military officer said on Monday.
The chair of the NATO Military Committee, Admiral Rob Bauer, set out the biggest revamp to the organisation’s military plans since the Cold War should Moscow dare to widen the conflict.
“They might not be 11 feet tall, but they are certainly not two feet tall,” Bauer said.
“So, we should never underestimate the Russians and their ability to bounce back,” he added.
US President Joe Biden and his NATO counterparts are set to endorse a major shakeup of the alliance’s planning system at a summit in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius next week.
First Russia-China formal military talks since Wagner Revolt
China’s defence minister reaffirmed the country's military relations with Russia during a meeting on Monday with the head of Russia's navy, the first formal military talks between the friendly neighbours since Wagner's revolt.
Li Shangfu, the Minister of National Defence, hoped for increased exchanges, joint exercises and other forms of cooperation that would take defence ties to “a new level".
He stated this to Nikolai Yevmenov, head of Russia's navy, after the two met in Beijing.
“The Chinese and Russian navies have close exchanges and frequent interactions,” the ministry quoted Li as saying.
“It is hoped that the two sides will strengthen communication at all levels, regularly organise joint training, joint patrols and joint war games,” he added.
The military cooperation embodies the Chinese and Russian governments' informal alliance to oppose the US-led liberal world order.
China has repeatedly said it is neutral in the Ukraine war, but has stood solidly beside Russia accusing the US and NATO of provoking Moscow and of fuelling the bloodshed by helping arm Ukraine.
Russian drones rain down on Kyiv
After a relative lull, Russia launched a drone attack early Sunday on Ukraine's capital, officials said.
It was the first such attack in 12 days, with Moscow unleashing relentless strikes on Kyiv throughout June.
All the Iranian-made Shahed exploding drones were detected and shot down, according to Serhii Popko, head of the Kyiv city administration. In addition to the city itself, the surrounding Kyiv region was targeted.
Regional Governor Ruslan Kravchenko reported one person was wounded by falling debris from a destroyed drone.
Officials in the Ukrainian capital didn't provide an exact number of drones that attacked the city. But Ukraine's air force said across the country, eight Shaheds and three Kalibr cruise missiles were launched by the Russians.
Ukraine reports incremental gains in heavy fighting
Kyiv said on Monday its forces had gained some ground along eastern and southern fronts from Russian troops, reclaiming 37.4 km sq of territory in the past week.
Ukrainian forces were advancing in the Bakhmut direction, Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar said, adding Russian forces were attacking in the Lyman, Avdiivka and Mariinka directions in the Donetsk region.
Ukraine has reclaimed nine square kilometres over the past week along the eastern front, Maliar said.
In the south, Ukraine has regained 28.4 kilometres of territory, bringing the total area of re-captured territory 37.4 km sq of territory.
Over the weekend, Russia said its forces had repelled Ukrainian attacks near villages ringing Bakhmut and in areas further south.
Furnished with Western equipment and training, Kyiv launched its long-awaited counteroffensive in June. Analysts say Ukraine's progress has been slow, with Russia mounting stiff resistance.
Both sides are likely to have suffered heavy losses.
Moscow says 700,000 Ukrainian children now in Russia
Russia has brought some 700,000 children from war-torn Ukraine to its territory, Grigory Karasin, head of the international committee in the Federation Council, Russia's upper house of parliament, said late on Sunday.
Moscow says its programme of bringing children from Ukraine into Russia is to protect orphans and children abandoned in the conflict zone.
However, Ukraine says many children have been illegally deported, while the United States (US) says thousands have been forcibly removed from their homes.
Most of the movement of people and children occurred in the first few months of the war.
In July 2022, the US estimated Russia "forcibly deported" 260,000 children, while Ukraine's Ministry of Integration of Occupied Territories, says 19,492 Ukrainian children are currently considered illegally deported.