© Reuters. Ukrainian soldier fires a Partyzan small rocket launch system at Russian troops near the front line, amid the Russian attack on Ukraine, in the Zaporizhzhia region, Ukraine July 13, 2023. REUTERS/Stringer/File photo
(Reuters) – A civilian was killed and another injured in Russian shelling in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region, while seven others were injured in a village in Zaporizhzhia, Ukrainian officials said on Sunday.
The Kharkiv and Zaporizhzhia regions in eastern and southeastern Ukraine have seen heavy fighting in the 17 months since Moscow invaded its neighbour, with Kyiv forces fighting to liberate areas now occupied by Russian forces.
In a move widely condemned as illegal, Russia said last year it annexed Zaporizhzhia and other parts of Ukraine, and controlled a nuclear power plant there, Europe’s largest, but the regional capital, the city of Zaporizhzhia, remained under Kyiv control.
Ukraine retook much of eastern Kharkiv in September, with Russian troops now occupying only a small patch of land there.
A 33-year-old man was killed and a man injured in Russian shelling at a residential building in the region’s Kolodiazne village overnight, Dari Sinehubov, the governor of Kharkiv, said on messaging app Telegram.
He said Russia had launched four S-400 surface-to-air missiles overnight at the city of Kharkiv, slightly damaging residential buildings.
Zaporizhzhia Governor Yuriy Malashko posted on Telegram that three women and four men were injured and a number of houses damaged by heavy Russian shelling from multiple rocket launchers in the village of Stepnohirske on Saturday afternoon.
Over the past day, there have been 48 Russian artillery shells on several towns and villages in the region, Malashko said.
The Russians shelled the city of Zaporizhzhia, damaging at least 16 buildings, Anatoliy Kurtiev, secretary of the city council, said on Telegram, adding that one district was without power Sunday morning.
An official stationed by Russia in parts of Zaporizhzhia controlled by Moscow, Vladimir Rogov, said on Saturday that Ukrainian forces had destroyed a school in the village of Stulneve, while air defense forces intercepted a drone over the town of Tokmak.
Reuters was unable to independently verify the Russian and Ukrainian accounts. Both sides deny targeting civilians.
Russia’s defense ministry said on Saturday it had destroyed a number of Ukrainian arms depots in the Zaporizhzhia region over the past few days. Ukraine’s main military command said Russia was trying to stop the Ukrainian advance there, shelling the area incessantly.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy vowed again on Saturday to liberate all Russian-occupied land.
“We cannot leave our people, any towns and villages under Russian occupation,” Zelenskiy said in his evening video address. “Wherever the Russian occupation continues, violence and humiliation of the people is rampant.”