MOSCOW – Authorities in a region in southern Ukraine that was annexed by Russia last month say at least four civilians have been killed in Ukrainian shelling of river crossings.
Kiril Stremausov, deputy head of the Moscow regional administration in Kherson, said that four people were killed as a result of the Ukrainian attack on the bridge over the Dnieper River in Kherson on Thursday evening. Vadim Ilmiyev, head of health protection in Kherson, said that 13 more people were injured as a result of the attack.
The Ukrainian military confirmed that the bridge had been hit, but denied that civilians were killed as they “cannot be on the bridge at this time due to the curfew”.
After Ukrainian strikes disabled the bridge over the Dnieper in Kherson, Russian authorities organized ferry crossings and pontoon bridges to bring goods to the city on the west bank of the river and Russian troops in the area.
The strike comes at a time when Ukrainian troops continue their offensive on the western bank of Kherson.
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ANKARA, Turkey – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, appears to be “much softer and more open to negotiations” about ending the war in Ukraine than in the past.
“We are not without hope,” he said about the possibility of negotiations.
Erdogan made the comments late Thursday after returning from a trip to Azerbaijan. The Hurriyet newspaper and other media outlets reported his comments on Friday.
Meanwhile, the Turkish leader, who held meetings with Putin during the war, says he is optimistic that a UN-brokered deal with Turkey that allowed millions of tons of Ukrainian grain to be shipped to world markets could be extended.
Erdogan told a group of reporters that he had discussed extending the grain corridor agreement with both Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“There are no obstacles to the extension of the maritime transportation agreement,” Erdogan said. “But if there is a blockage, there is no obstacle to overcoming it.”
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