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Russian defence minister inspects frontline troops

Russian defence minister inspects frontline troops

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MOSCOW: Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu inspected troops involved in what Moscow calls its special military operation in Ukraine, reports AFP.

Shoigu made a working trip to the Southern Military District and inspected troops in the areas of the special military operation, the defence ministry said in a statement on Telegram.

It added that Shoigu spoke with servicemen on the frontline and listened to reports from military officials at a command post.

The statement did not say where exactly the trip took place and whether Shoigu visited Ukraine. A video released by the ministry with its statement showed Shoigu aboard a military helicopter as well as some aerial shots of unidentified empty stretches of land.

 The announcement of his visit comes after Russian President Vladimir Putin held a meeting with top military brass overseeing the Ukraine offensive, including Shoigu.

Russia launched a barrage of missiles on Friday on multiple cities in Ukraine, plunging them into darkness, cutting water and heat supplies and forcing people to endure sub-zero temperatures.

After a series of embarrassing battlefield defeats in Ukraine, Russia since October has pursued an aerial onslaught against what Moscow says are military-linked facilities.