Ukraine fires six deputy defense ministers in major reshuffle

After Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov was dismissed earlier this month, the Ukrainian government decided to dismiss six deputy defense ministers on Monday.

Hanna Maliar, who has frequently issued public updates on Russia’s war against Ukraine, was also included among those removed.

The government gave no reason for the dismissals.

The Ministry had been dogged by media allegations of corruption while Reznikov was in the post although he faced no corruption allegations himself.

Less than two weeks ago, Rustem Umerov was appointed as the new Defense Minister.

“Rebooting. We (have) started. We continue. (The) Ministry continues to work as usual,” Umerov wrote in a Facebook post.

Ukraine claims gains in south and east, downs drones, missiles

Also on Monday Ukraine claimed gains in the south and east frontlines while downing Russian drones and missiles, ahead of its president’s visit to the US.

Kiev said on Monday it had taken back the eastern village of Klishchiivka, in what would be Ukraine’s second significant gain in three days in its months-long counteroffensive against the Russian army.

The empty village, which reportedly had hundreds of inhabitants in the past, lies about 9km south of Bakhmut and has been the scene of intense fighting for weeks.

“Today, I would like to particularly commend the soldiers who, step by step, are returning to Ukraine what belongs to it, namely in the area of Bakhmut,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his nightly video address to the nation on Sunday.

The breakthrough in Klishchiivka comes days after Kiev said it had gained control of the tiny nearby village of Andriivka and as Zelensky prepares for his second wartime visit to its major backer, the United States, to push for a continued flow of money and weapons.

Ukraine says two people killed in Russian attacks

Ukrainian officials said on Monday that two were killed people in the southern region of Kherson after Russia carried out a new wave of overnight air strikes and shelling in Ukraine.

According to the Kherson region Governor Oleksandr Prokudin a man aged 72 and an elderly woman had been killed in a Russian attack on the region, and three others were wounded.

He said four others were hurt in a morning drone attack on the town of Beryslav.

Odesa region Governor Oleh Kiper also said the Izmail district, home to Danube River ports that are used to export grain, had been targeted in a drone attack but gave no details of any damage to port or grain infrastructure.

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