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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy promised his country that there would be no respite in the counter-offensive that claimed towns and cities from Russian troops, while bombing continued across a large swath of Ukraine on Sunday.

Zelenskyy looked at a list of cities Ukraine has taken over with its lightning-fast push through the northeast.

“Maybe now it seems to some of you that after a streak of victories we have some respite,” he said in his nightly video speech. “But this is not a break. This is the preparation for the next series … Because Ukraine must be free, everything”.

The Ukrainian military command said on Saturday that its forces have secured the eastern bank of the Oskil River. The river, which flows south from Russia to Ukraine, had been a natural break in the front lines that had just emerged from the start of the Kiev counter-offensive.

Investigators work on the site of a burning vehicle following bombing in Donetsk, an area controlled by Russian-backed separatist forces, eastern Ukraine, on Saturday, September 17, 2022. A Ukrainian bombing attack killed four people in downtown Donetsk on Saturday. According to the mayor of the city Alexey Kulemzin, fragments of ammunition for Caesar howitzers were found.
((Photo AP / Alexei Alexandrov)

A RETIRED FLORIDA DOCTOR TRIPS TO UKRAINE TO HELP INFANTS AND INFANTS AFFECTED BY THE INVASION OF RUSSIA

As Russian bullets hit towns and cities over the weekend, the British Defense Ministry warned that Moscow is likely to ramp up attacks on civilian targets as it suffers defeats on the battlefield.

“Over the past seven days, Russia has increased its targeting of civilian infrastructure even where it probably does not feel any immediate military effect,” the ministry said in an online briefing. “As it faces setbacks on the front lines, Russia has probably expanded the places it is willing to strike in an attempt to directly undermine the morale of the Ukrainian people and government.”

On Saturday, Governor Oleh Syniehubov said Russian fire killed four doctors attempting to evacuate a psychiatric hospital in the Kharkiv region. Two patients were injured in the attack on Strelecha, he said.

A firefighter extinguishes a burning vehicle after bombing in Donetsk, an area controlled by Russian-backed separatist forces, in eastern Ukraine, on Saturday, September 17, 2022. A Ukrainian bombing attack killed four people in downtown Donetsk on Saturday.  According to the mayor of the city Alexey Kulemzin, fragments of ammunition for Caesar howitzers were found.

A firefighter extinguishes a burning vehicle after bombing in Donetsk, an area controlled by Russian-backed separatist forces, in eastern Ukraine, on Saturday, September 17, 2022. A Ukrainian bombing attack killed four people in downtown Donetsk on Saturday. According to the mayor of the city Alexey Kulemzin, fragments of ammunition for Caesar howitzers were found.
(Photo AP / Alexei Alexandrov)

Night bombings also hit a hospital in Mykolaiv, a major Black Sea port, regional governor Vitaliy Kim said. And five people died last day in Russian attacks in the Donetsk region, one of two Ukrainian regions that Russia recognizes as sovereign states, Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said.

Separatist forces that control much of Donetsk said Ukrainian bombing of a POW colony in Olenivka killed one prisoner and wounded four. More than 50 prisoners of war were killed in a July attack on Olenivka prison; The Russian and Ukrainian authorities blame each other.

A Washington-based think tank, the Institute for the Study of War, said Russian forces in Donetsk continue to conduct “meaningless operations” on villages instead of reinforcing the front line.

A prominent Vatican envoy and his entourage were targeted as they were distributing humanitarian supplies to Ukraine, the Vatican news service said Sunday. He did not report any injuries.

The incident took place on Saturday near the city of Zaporizhzhia and forced Vatican cardinal Konrad Krajewski and others to take cover.

“For the first time in my life I did not know where to run. Because running is not enough, you have to know where to go,” said the Polish-born cardinal, whose office makes charitable contributions in the name.

HIGH OFFICER FROM UKRAINE SAYS 450 BODIES FOUND IN THE COMMON TOMB OF IZYUM, SOME WITH HANDS TIED BEHIND THE BACK

Three people were injured in the night bombing of Nikopol, across the river from Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, regional governor Valentyn Reznichenko said. The six-reactor Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant was captured by Russian forces in March, but is operated by Ukrainian engineers. Its latest reactor was shut down a week ago after repeated power outages as the bombing put critical security systems at risk.

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Meanwhile, Kharkiv prosecutors accuse Russia of torturing civilians in a recently liberated village. In an online statement, they claimed to have found a basement where Russian forces allegedly tortured prisoners in Kozacha Lopan, near the Russian border.

In the pictures they released, they showed a TA-57 Russian military phone with additional wires and alligator clips attached to it. Ukrainian officials accused Russian forces of using Soviet-era radiotelephones as a power source to shock prisoners during interrogation. It was not immediately possible to verify the claims of the Ukrainians.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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