Civilians Flee Intense Fighting In Contested Eastern Ukraine

Story Highlights
  • Ukraine hits Russian targets, France offers Odessa help
  • Russia labels anti-torture group as ‘foreign agent’
  • Russian-held Ukraine region scheming to sell grain to North America

Russia-Ukraine Crisis: Civilians fled intense fighting in eastern Ukraine on June 10th as Russian and Ukrainian forces engaged in a grinding battle of attrition for key cities in the country’s industrial heartland. Mostly women, children and elderly residents left on a special evacuation train that departed from the city of Pokrovsk and headed west.

Meanwhile, Moscow on Friday officially announced its withdrawal from the United Nations World Tourism Organization which suspended Russia in April over its military operation in Ukraine. The government said it had “accepted a proposal from the Foreign Ministry concerning the withdrawal of Russia” from the Madrid-based body, said a decree signed by Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin.

The agency had suspended Russia on April 27th, saying the Ukraine operation went against its “values”. Ukraine pleaded to Western countries for faster deliveries of weapons as better-armed Russian forces pounded the east of the country, and for humanitarian support to combat growing outbreaks of deadly diseases.

Russia on Friday labelled a non-governmental organisation fighting for investigations into allegations of torture as a “foreign agent” in its latest move to silence critics in the country. Ukraine tried to push back Russian troops in the east and south on Friday as France offered to help ensure access to the port of Odessa and ease a global grain crisis.

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