Ukrainian troops, on the defensive for months, will soon counterattack as Russia's offensive looks to be faltering, a commander said, but President Volodymyr Zelenskiy warned that without a faster supply of arms the war could last years.
The Ukrainian military said early on Friday that 1,020 Russian troops had been killed over the previous 24 hours as they launched unsuccessful attacks on the towns of Lyman, Avdiivka, Mariinka, and Shakhtarske. But their main focus was still the mining town of Bakhmut.
"The enemy has not stopped its assault of Bakhmut," Ukraine's General Staff in a report.
Russian forces have for months been trying to capture Bakhmut as they seek to extend their control over eastern Ukraine, in Europe's deadliest infantry battle since World War Two.
Ukrainian forces have held them off, as they did again in Avdiivka, Mariinka and Shakhtarske, among the 80 Russian attacks that Ukrainian defenders repelled over the past day, the military said.