The Russian army controls about a fifth of Ukrainian territory (Reuters)

The Russian Defense Ministry said its forces advanced west after taking control of the Ukrainian city of Avdiivka, while the Russian Foreign Ministry said it had significantly expanded the list of European Union officials and politicians banned from entering Russia.

The Ministry of Defense stated - today, Friday - that Russian forces also destroyed a number of Ukrainian weapons provided by the West last week, including 7 Storm Shadow cruise missiles provided by Britain, and an American Patriot anti-aircraft guided missile. , a launch vehicle, and 42 “HIMARS” missiles launched by several launch systems.

The Russian Ministry of Defense said - in a statement - that after taking control of Avdiivka, units of the Center Group of the Russian forces continued to advance towards the west.

The ministry added, "In cooperation with aviation and artillery, the forces defeated huge numbers of Ukrainian personnel and equipment" in 6 nearby residential areas.

Taking control of Avdiivka, after months of fighting and large numbers of dead and wounded on both sides, is Russia's first major gain since seizing the city of Bakhmut last May.

Russia still controls less than a fifth of Ukrainian territory.

They are prohibited from entering

On the other hand, the Russian Foreign Ministry said - today, Friday - that it has significantly expanded the list of European Union officials and politicians banned from entering Russia in response to the latest series of sanctions imposed by the Union.

European Union member states approved the 13th package of Ukraine-related sanctions against Russia on Wednesday, which includes banning nearly 200 entities and individuals accused of helping Moscow buy weapons or being involved in the kidnapping of Ukrainian children, which Moscow denies.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said - in a statement - “The European Union continues its fruitless attempts to pressure Russia through unilateral restrictive measures.”

The ministry continued, "In response to these hostile actions, the Russian side has significantly expanded the list of representatives of European institutions and EU member states, who are now prohibited from entering the territory of our state."

She added that the ban list includes representatives of law enforcement agencies and business organizations who provided military assistance to Ukraine, representatives of European institutions involved in the prosecution of Russian officials, and those who collected materials to support the idea of ​​confiscating Russian state assets.

The statement continued that the Russian ban list "also includes representatives of the European Council, members of the legislative councils of European Union countries, and members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe who systematically make anti-Russian statements."

Source: Reuters