Amid ongoing hostilities, Russia alleges that Ukraine has targeted the critical Kerch bridge linking the mainland to annexed Crimea, causing its temporary closure for the third time in a year. Ukraine, on the other hand, reports progress in its counteroffensive in the Zaporizhzhia region, particularly in the Orikhiv axis in southern Ukraine.
The Kerch bridge, a key supply route for Russian forces during the conflict, has been the target of multiple attacks in the past, including an explosion involving a truck bomb in October and an attack in July. Meanwhile, civilian casualties have been reported on both sides of the conflict.
UK military officials suggest that Russia may have to split its forces to prevent a Ukrainian breakthrough in the south of the country. Ukraine’s deputy defense minister, Hanna Maliar, acknowledged Ukrainian troops’ progress in the Zaporizhzhia region but warned of heavily fortified Russian defense lines.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed that Ukrainian forces are advancing, pushing toward Melitopol, a major Russian-occupied urban center in the Zaporizhzhia region. However, the counteroffensive has been impeded by Russian minefields and defenses.
Ukraine has ramped up drone strikes on Russian-occupied areas, with adviser Mykhailo Podolyak indicating that such attacks could increase and extend into Russian territory. Podolyak noted that these strikes would likely be carried out by agents or partisans, signaling a shift in the conflict’s dynamics.