Russia’s war in Ukraine crosses 500-day mark.

Russia’s war in Ukraine has reached the 500-day mark – a grim milestone for a conflict that rages with no end in sight.

While the fighting has fallen largely into a stalemate, Ukraine’s government and its Western supporters hope a broad counteroffensive launched last month will change the battle lines and return Russian-occupied areas to Ukrainian control.

In the meantime, the war continues to take a heavy toll on the lives and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people. And the stakes are only getting higher.

The United Nations has documented the deaths of 9,000 civilians, including more than 500 children, in the conflict so far. The real toll could be much higher.

A month ago, a major dam that Russia controls in southern Ukraine collapsed, flooding an entire region with a toxic torrent that left death and destruction in its wake as well as long-term environmental consequences.

Fears of a nuclear disaster have increased, particularly this week, after Ukraine and Russia accused each other of planning to attack one of the world’s largest atomic power plants.

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