Kherson is one of the strategic regions located between the Russian-occupied Crimean Peninsula and eastern Ukraine. The Russian retreat might mean the end of Moscow’s aim to reach Odessa and further southwest Ukraine.
Ukraine denies it was under Western pressure to negotiate with Russia, doubling down on its insistence that talks could be held only if Russia relinquishes all of the territories it has occupied, as fighting continues on day 259.
Moscow is set to lay its claim on 15 percent of Ukrainian territory, escalating the ongoing conflict where any hope of peace is beginning to look like a distant reality.
Experts say several other countries have also mobilised reserves during past engagements when wars lasted longer than expected.
Moldova, a neighbouring state to Ukraine, has a breakaway region called Transnistria, where Russians have troops. Recently Moldova asked Russians to leave the region, angering Moscow.
Meanwhile, Kremlin-backed officials in occupied southern Ukraine begin issuing Russian passports to residents as Moscow seeks to solidify its rule over captured parts of the country amid its military offensive – now in its 110th day.
Moscow's troops push deeper into the strategic eastern city of Sievierodonetsk, while the European Union agrees to ban most imports of Russian oil in response to the Ukraine conflict — now in its 97th day.
Russia seeks to encircle Ukrainian troops in twin cities straddling a river as Zelenskyy warns Moscow is seeking to destroy eastern Donbass region in fighting that just entered its fourth month.
US pledges continued support for Ukraine as fighting – now in its 68th day – stretches along a broad front in southern and eastern Ukraine's Donbass region.
Russia’s February assault has not produced the results Moscow envisaged in the face of fierce Ukrainian resistance. Now, they could be recalibrating.
Since pro-Russian groups declared their separatism in eastern Ukraine in 2014, violating Ukrainian territorial integrity, the region has seen heavy clashes between Kiev and the separatists.
US and UK announce new sanctions against Russia as Ukraine warns residents in the east to evacuate ahead of a feared assault – part of a wider Russian offensive in Ukraine that continues on its 43rd day.
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