Russia-Ukraine live news: NATO warns war could drag on for years | News about the war between Russia and Ukraine

The alliance’s warning of a protracted war comes as Russia intensifies its attack on eastern Ukraine.

  • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warns that the war in Ukraine could drag on for years and calls for more state-of-the-art weapons to be supplied to Ukrainian troops.
  • The TASS news agency said that two senior Ukrainian commanders who defended the Azovstal Steel Plant in Mariupol were transferred to Russia to investigate.
  • Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai says he is “preparing for the worst” as Russian forces intensify their attack on eastern cities.
  • Ukraine’s military says it suffered a setback in Metolkine, a village southeast of the key city of Severodonetsk.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy visits the frontlines in Mykolayiv and Odessa and declares that Ukrainian troops will “definitely” win against Russia.

Here are all the news:

Azovstal supreme commanders transferred to Russia for investigation: report

According to the Russian state news agency TASS, two senior Ukrainian commanders who defended the Azovstal Steel Plant in Mariupol have been transferred to Russia for investigative purposes.

Citing an unnamed Russian law enforcement source, TASS said on Saturday that Svyatoslav Palamar, a deputy commander of the Azov Battalion, and Serhiy Volynsky, commander of the 36th Naval Brigade, had been transferred to Russia.

Special forces officers transferred them from Donetsk “to conduct investigative activities with them,” TASS quoted the source as saying. “Other officers from various Ukrainian units were also transported to Russia.”

Hundreds of militants were captured by Russian forces in May after a months-long siege of Mariupol. Moscow said at the time they were transferred to breakaway Russian-backed units in eastern Ukraine.

NATO’s Stoltenberg warns of years of war in Ukraine

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has warned the war in Ukraine could last for years as he called for state-of-the-art weapons for Ukrainian troops.

“We have to be prepared for the fact that it can take years. We must not let up in supporting Ukraine,” he told German newspaper Bild am Sonntag.

“Even if the costs are high, not only for military support, but also because of rising energy and food prices.”

Read more here.

Ukraine suffers a military setback near Severodonestk

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said Ukrainian forces suffered a military setback in Metolkine, southeast of the city of Severodonetsk.

“As a result of artillery fire and an attack, the enemy partially succeeded in the village of Metolkine and tried to gain a foothold,” the Facebook post said.

But the military said Ukrainian forces stopped the Russian advance near the village of Syrotyne.

Luhansk governor prepares ‘for the worst’

Serhiy Haidai, governor of Ukraine’s eastern region of Luhansk, told AFP that Russian forces “fired our troop positions around the clock”.

“There’s a saying: prepare for the worst and the best will come,” said Haidai from the city of Lysyhansk, where preparations for street fighting are underway: soldiers dig in, erect barbed wire and police use burned-out vehicles to slow down traffic on the streets.

Haidai called for shipments of “long-range weapons to arrive as soon as possible,” adding, “The fact that the West is helping us is good, but that’s the way it is [too] late.”

Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s ongoing coverage of the war in Ukraine.

Here you will find all the important developments from Saturday 19 June.

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