President Zelensky says the battle for the Donbas region, regarded as the second phase of the war, has begun after Russia launched a major offensive in the east of Ukraine.

Ukraine says that a large proportion of the Russian forces is now focusing on the eastern region of Donbas. Russia has now taken control of the Ukrainian city of Kreminna as part of what appears to be a plan to surround the region.

Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov has said this is a turning point in Russia’s “special military operation”

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