Investigations into allegations of civilian deaths in Kyiv, Bucha and elsewhere continue as more evidence emerges.
Meanwhile, civilians remain trapped in Ukrainian cities like Mariupol and Luhansk, with no new evacuation corridors established Friday. Mariupol's mayor told CNN in an interview that "one clear day of cease fire" is needed to evacuate civilians sheltering in the Azovstal iron and steel plant in the besieged city.
Here are the latest developments on Russia's war in Ukraine:
- Russia's land bridge ambition: Russia has revealed that the goal of its invasion of Ukraine is to take "full control" over southern Ukraine as well as the eastern Donbas region, and establishing a land corridor connecting Russia to Crimea, the peninsula it annexed in 2014. Ukrainian officials described heavy fighting throughout the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions, in addition to at least 20 injured in "intensified" shelling in the southern Mykolaiv region.
- Mass graves: Ukrainian officials say they have identified mass graves outside the city of Mariupol. The claim is supported by photos collected and analyzed by US satellite imagery company Maxar Technologies that appear to show more than 200 new graves to the west of Mariupol.
- No way out: No evacuation corridors in Ukraine have been agreed with the Russians due to "danger on the routes," Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said Friday. The president of the European Council, Charles Michel, said he "strongly urged" for immediate humanitarian access and safe passage from Mariupol and other besieged cities in a call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday. The European Union's top diplomat, Josep Borrell, also called for evacuation corridors in Mariupol to be created "immediately."
- Bodies examined: Forensic investigators are examining 1,084 bodies of civilians found in the Kyiv region following the withdrawal of Russian forces, according to the police.
- A call for larger NATO presence: Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda has called on NATO to send more troops to eastern Europe including to his own country.
- Killings in Bucha: UN human rights officers have documented the "unlawful killing, including by summary execution, of some 50 civilians" in Bucha, a town on the outskirts of Kyiv, the UN Human Rights Office said Friday.
- Luhansk evacuation disrupted: Serhiy Haidai, the head of the Luhansk region military administration, said Friday that Russian shelling disrupted an attempt to evacuate civilians from the heavily contested eastern Ukrainian town of Rubizhne, stopping a bus from reaching the town.
- UK PM on Putin's prospects: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Friday that Russia has a "realistic possibility" of winning the war in Ukraine, calling the situation there "unpredictable" at the moment.
- Ukraine alleges Russian orders were given to kill POWs: Ukraine’s military intelligence on Wednesday released a purported communications intercept of Russian armed forces referring to an alleged order to kill Ukrainian prisoners of war in the city of Popasna in the eastern region of Luhansk, which is bearing the brunt of Russia’s renewed attack. It appears to feature Russian soldiers saying: “Keep the most senior among them, and let the rest go forever. Let them go forever, damn it, so that no one will ever see them again, including relatives.”