Russia's offensive in Ukraine continued but at a significantly slower pace on Tuesday and a second senior Russian commander had been killed, Ukrainian military and intelligence said, as frightened residents fled bombed-out cities.
Ukraine's military intelligence said on Tuesday that Ukrainian forces killed a Russian general near the besieged city of Kharkiv, the second Russian senior commander to die in the invasion.
"Major General Vitaly Gerasimov, first deputy commander of Russia's 41st army, was killed on Monday," the Chief Directorate of Intelligence of Ukraine's defense ministry said in a statement.
Ukraine's general staff of the armed forces said the Russian offensive continues although at a significantly slower pace.
Russia's defense ministry could not be immediately reached for comment and Reuters could not verify the reports.
Russia calls its actions in Ukraine a "special operation" that it says is not designed to occupy territory but to destroy its southern neighbor's military capabilities and capture what it regards as dangerous nationalists.
Kyiv has rejected Moscow's offer of possible humanitarian corridors to Russia and Belarus amid reports that in the encircled southern port city of Mariupol, hundreds of thousands of people remained trapped without food and water under regular Russian bombardments.
However, Moscow has since proposed giving the residents of the cities of Sumy and Mariupol the choice of moving elsewhere in Ukraine on Tuesday, setting a deadline in the early hours for Kyiv to agree, Russian news agencies reported.
After the third attempt to ease the bloodshed at talks in Belarus, negotiators warned not to expect the next round to bring a final result. The Russian and Ukrainian foreign ministers are expected to meet in Turkey on Thursday.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow would halt operations if Ukraine ceased fighting, amended its constitution to declare neutrality, and recognized Russia's annexation of Crimea and the independence of regions held by Russian-backed separatists.
A senior U.S. defense official said Putin had now deployed nearly 100% of the more than 150,000 forces that he had pre-staged outside Ukraine before the invasion.