Kremlin says creation of "buffer zone" in Ukraine needs time

Hungary's Prime Minister Orban and Russia's President Putin attend a press conference in Moscow

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Wednesday that its military was still working to create a "buffer zone" in Ukraine's Kharkiv region but this would take time.

President Vladimir Putin said in May that Russia was creating a buffer to protect its border regions, especially Belgorod which lies adjacent to Kharkiv, from Ukrainian attacks.

"Of course, the realisation of this task is time-consuming, it takes time. Work in this direction is under way," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters when asked how long it would take for Russia to guarantee the security of Belgorod.

Later on Wednesday, Belgorod regional governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said one person was killed and seven more wounded in Ukrainian shelling of the Russian border town of Shebekino.

According to Gladkov, three multi-storey residential buildings, several commercial facilities, an industrial enterprise and 20 vehicles were damaged in the incident.

Shebekino and the wider Belgorod region have come under frequent attack by Ukrainian shells and drones in the course of the war which is now well into its third year.

(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)