The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Russia claims capture of key Ukrainian transport hub

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on May 28 that the situation in the east of the country was "indescribably difficult." (Video: Reuters)
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Russia’s Defense Ministry said Saturday that its forces now control Lyman, a key transport hub providing access to bridges over the Siversky Donets River, and the British Defense Ministry said most of the town has probably fallen into Russian hands. Ukraine’s military hasn’t confirmed the capture but said Moscow’s troops had consolidated positions around the city.

Russia is also trying to encircle the eastern city of Severodonetsk, but the regional governor said Saturday that the city has not been cut off. The Pentagon described the city as “still being actively fought over,” and compared the Donbas clashes to a “knife fight.”

More than three months into the conflict, prosecutors from more than a dozen countries and several international and human rights groups are investigating thousands of suspected war crimes in Ukraine. But the number of probes has prompted questions about whether duplication and overlap could lead to jurisdictional disputes. It also could take years for high-level decision-makers to be held accountable, if they are at all.

Here’s what else to know

  • Russian forces in the occupied southern Kherson region have closed the borders to Ukrainian-held territory, Russian state media said Saturday. The regional capital, also called Kherson, was the first major city to fall to Russia following the Feb. 24 invasion.
  • German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron urged Russian President Vladimir Putin to agree to an immediate cease-fire and withdraw Russian forces from Ukraine.
  • Disapproval of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine is increasingly bubbling to the surface in Russia — from hawks demanding a more aggressive policy to officials and service members who want no part of the bloodshed.
  • The Washington Post has lifted its paywall for readers in Russia and Ukraine. Telegram users can subscribe to our channel.