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IN BRIEF: What is known about Kiev’s attack on city of Shebekino in Belgorod Region

According to Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Igor Konashenkov, Kiev lost over 60 servicemen and 6 vehicles; several civilians were injured

MOSCOW, June 1. /TASS/. Russian forces thwarted a Ukrainian attempt to break into the city of Shebekino in the Belgorod Region, Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Igor Konashenkov told reporters Thursday.

According to the spokesman, Kiev lost over 60 servicemen and 6 vehicles; several civilians were injured as a result of Ukraine’s attack on Shebekino.

Here are the key facts about the incident.

Shelling and breach attempt

- Ukrainian forces shelled Shebekino with Grad multiple launch rocket systems several times Thursday night. According to Belgorod Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov, the city was shelled at midnight, 3:40 a.m. and 5:15 a.m.

- Early in the morning, messages circulated on social media claiming that Ukrainian forces had allegedly infiltrated Russian territory near Shebekino, but these reports were debunked by the regional anti-crisis center.

- Later, the Defense Ministry reported that the Russian armed forces, together with border security forces, thwarted "a new attempt by the Kiev regime to carry out a terror attack against the civilian population of the city of Shebekino." According to the Ministry, the attack took place at about 3:00 a.m. by a force of up to two motorized companies with tanks.

- Russian forces repelled three Ukrainian attacks with rocket systems, artillery, army Aviation and heavy flamethrower systems, preventing the state border from being invaded, the Ministry said.

- Kiev’s losses included killed 30 servicemen, four armored vehicles, a Grad rocket launcher and a pickup truck.

Victims and damage

- On Thursday morning, Gladkov reported that eight people were injured as a result of Ukrainian shelling in Shebekino. Later, he reported another injured person.

- Two administrative buildings were damaged by the shelling, with one catching fire. Fires were reported in a residential house and a dormitory. The total number of damaged buildings was not reported.

- There is currently no electricity in Shebekino, the governor reported.

- A bus was also hit by Ukrainian shelling. Initially, reports on social media claimed that the bus was transporting evacuated residents, but later, it was found that the bus was empty.

Evacuation of residents

- On Thursday morning, Gladkov debunked reports about the mass emergency evacuation of residents in the Shebekinsky District, but stated the authorities were ready to house people leaving the city in temporary accommodation facilities.

- Later, the governor said that the authorities are moving forward with evacuating residents. He warned that evacuation amid shelling can be dangerous.

- A total of 6 temporary accommodation points for more than 3,000 residents of the Shebekinsky District were set up in Belgorod, city administration head Valentin Demidov said. About 1,000 people will be accommodated at the Belgorod Arena athletic complex, with approximately 300 people already there.

- A total of 200 people - children and accompanying adults - will be transported to recreational facilities in Penza, with 600 people to be transported to Kaluga and Yaroslavl.

Reaction of authorities

- Graduating students were excused from taking final exams. The matter of their admission to college is currently being decided, Gladkov said.

- Russian President Vladimir Putin receives reports about the situation in Shebekino, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

- The Belgorod anti-crisis center warned that phone calls urging residents to leave the region are fake and aim to sow panic.

Previous attack

- This is Kiev’s second attempt to attack the Belgorod region in two weeks: on May 22, a sabotage group breached the Grayvoronovsky District. A counter-terrorist operation regime was declared in the region.

- According to available reports, one civilian was killed during the attack, and one elderly woman died during evacuation. In addition, 13 people were reported to have been injured.

- The Russian Defense Ministry reported that Ukrainian forces were defeated the next day, on May 23. According to the Ministry, Kiev lost over 70 militants and 9 vehicles.