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Ukraine plans counterattack as Russia solidifies its hold on the country

Ukrainian government officials have spoken of efforts to marshal up to one million troops and of their aim to recapture southern parts of the country under Russian control. Meanwhile, Russian-installed officials want to hold a referendum in Russian-controlled Ukrainian regions to incorporate them into Russia.

On Tuesday Kyiv said it had carried out a successful long-range rocket strike against Russian forces in a territory in southern Ukraine that it plans to retake in their counter-offensive.

According to Ukrainian sources, the strike hit an ammunition dump killing 52 Russians. The strike came after Washington supplied Ukraine with HIMARS mobile artillery systems which Kyiv says its forces are starting to use with ever greater efficacy.

Mother of god.
Reportedly, a large Russian ammo depot in Nova Kahovka.

— Illia Ponomarenko 🇺🇦 (@IAPonomarenko) July 11, 2022

However, Ukraine is still under constant threat of Russian attacks and even from a possible new Russian offensive in the east of the country.

Moscow says it is determined to take control of all of the industrial Donbas region, parts of whose two provinces Donetsk and Luhansk have been under the control of Russian-backed separatists since 2014.

Russian efforts to solidify control

Russia has tried to introduce the rouble in Kherson and is offering Russian passports to locals who will take them.

Moscow also tries to relocate Ukrainian citizens to parts of Russia. In May, Ukraine’s human rights ombudswoman, Lyudmyla Denisova said that Russia had relocated more than 210,000 children during the conflict, part of more than 1.2 million Ukrainians who Kyiv said have been deported against their will.

According to an official at the US Agency for International Development, Mariya Heletiy the Russian army established so-called “filtration camps” to mass-deport Ukrainian citizens into the country. As she stressed, many Ukrainians, especially males, are killed during the process.

The russians are already sending people from the recently occupied Lysychansk to the filtration camps.

Human rights violations of the _unimaginable scale_ are happening now in the occupied territories. And guess what: int'l organizations don't give a shit #ArmUkraineNow

— Olena Halushka (@OlenaHalushka) July 6, 2022

Glimmers of hope

Countries around the world continue to provide Ukraine with financial, humanitarian and military aid to help the country with the Russian invasion.

On Tuesday, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal thanked the United States for its “incredible support” after Ukraine received a further USD 1.7 billion in international financial assistance.

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