Latest news on Russia’s war in Ukraine: Kiev has launched a massive attack on Putin’s forces in Crimea and southern Russia

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Officials and the military in Kiev said Ukraine had launched a “massive” drone attack on Russian infrastructure and military facilities in the Black Sea, Crimea and southern Russia.

Ukraine’s military said its drones struck an oil refinery, a radar station and other military facilities in Russia early Friday, as Russian officials reported a “massive” attack in Krasnodar and claimed to have shot down 70 planes over the Black Sea and Crimea.

It comes after South Korea recalled Russia’s ambassador over a new accord signed by Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin during the latter’s visit to North Korea this week, which the Russian president said included a mutual defense clause.

As he left Pyongyang, Mr Putin argued that Russia supplying weapons to nuclear-armed North Korea would mirror how the West arms Ukraine.

But the move angered Seoul, with Mr Putin simultaneously warning South Korea against making a “big mistake” if it decided to arm Ukraine and threatening a “painful” response.

Ukraine captures Russian “Barn” tank modified to counter drone threat

What Ukrainians call a “barn” tank, the strange-looking Russian combat vehicle captured by forces in Kiev shows how troops are trying to adapt to the constant threat of drone attacks.

The vehicle, which was built from a rusted T-62 tank, had been modified to have a boxy metal shell, a rear cage and electronic warfare devices attached to it, soldiers told Reuters after it was captured this week.

They say it was used to transport food, ammunition and troops. Its canopy emerged to protect against drone attacks, especially cheaply produced FPV (first view) drones that attach ammunition and the pilot watches their target on a screen.

“It was designed to protect against FPV drones and (drone bombs). This is an empty taxi for personnel that has electronic warfare as its only protection,” said Serhii Mysyura, a lieutenant colonel, on official Ukrainian army television.

Nearly 28 months after Russia launched its full-scale invasion, the use of drones by both sides has become ubiquitous on the battlefield, making it difficult to advance or operate safely.

“They obviously haven’t worked on it. They quickly dressed and sent the tank to the front line,” said Dmytro, a Ukrainian soldier who spoke to Reuters from a vehicle in the Donetsk region.

They said they seized the vehicle near Klishchiivka, a village that has been wracked by months of fighting with the Russian-occupied town of Bakhmut.

Dmytro said that getting in and out of carrying equipment was difficult with its small hatch. Visibility was very limited and there was a foul smell inside.

Aerial footage taken by the Ukrainian military and released on June 17 shows the tank in a wooded area with a Russian crew. Then the forces of Kiev placed the Ukrainian flag on it.

A Ukrainian serviceman from the 22nd Separate Mechanized Brigade stands next to a Russian T-62 Soviet main battle tank designed with anti-drone protection recently captured by his unit at an undisclosed location in the Donetsk region.
A Ukrainian serviceman from the 22nd Separate Mechanized Brigade stands next to a Russian T-62 Soviet main battle tank designed with anti-drone protection recently captured by his unit at an undisclosed location in the Donetsk region. (Reuters)

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