Russia-Ukraine war live updates: Putin threatens new targets if Ukraine gets longer-range rockets; missiles hit Kyiv

Wreckage on Sunday near a railway service facility that was hit by a Russian missile strike in Kyiv, Ukraine. (Natacha Pisarenko/AP)

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Updated June 6, 2022 at 2: 41 a.m. EDT|Published

June 5, 2022 at 2: 42 a.m. EDT

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Russian President Vladimir Putin threatened to escalate his bombing campaign if Western nations send Ukraine longer-range rockets, and he dismissed the weapons President Biden recently pledged as “nothing new.”

In a television interview with state media that was recorded Friday and aired Sunday, Putin said he considered the medium-range missiles Biden promised last month to be replacements for similar artillery that Ukraine has lost in the fighting. Putin stated that if longer-range missiles arrive, Putin’s military will begin striking targets it had not yet hit. He did not give any details. He also said that the West’s support of the war effort was an attempt to prolong the conflict.

Also on Sunday, Russian rockets struck the Ukrainian capital for the first time in more than a month, shattering the city’s sense of tentative safety. Russia’s Defense Ministry said its missiles destroyed tanks and other armored vehicles sent to Ukraine by Eastern European allies, but Ukrainian authorities denied the claim and again accused Moscow of targeting civilian infrastructure.

Here’s what else to know

  • Ukrainian forces have regained ground in the key eastern city of Severodonetsk, where intense street fighting has raged for weeks.
  • Police in the hard-hit eastern province of Luhansk accused Russian troops of shelling a humanitarian aid facility where 40 civilians were sheltering. No information was available on injuries or deaths.
  • Ukraine’s national soccer team lost an emotional game on Sunday, ending its World Cup dream after a dramatic war-delayed run that saw the country and its diaspora rally in support of the squad.
  • The Washington Post has lifted its paywall for readers in Russia and Ukraine. Telegram users can subscribe to our channel.

5: 29 p.m.

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Reis Thebault:

For weeks, some of the war’s most ferocious fighting has unfolded in the eastern city of Severodonetsk, which Russia has bombarded as it attempts to take control of the Donbas region. Both sides have traded territorial gains in recent days, and at one point local officials said Russia controlled 70 percent of the city. However, Ukrainian fighters launched successful counterattacks to take half of Severodonetsk. The prolonged fighting will continue to be especially devastating for civilians stuck in the city. Haidai estimated that about 15,000 remain, and he said evacuation has been impossible recently. In the coming days, he warned in a video posted to Telegram, Russia “will try to level the Luhansk region to the ground.”

Reis Thebault

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