BERLIN REPORT OF FIGHTING IN THE WEST

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FRENCH SUCCESSES ADMITTED

AMSTERDAM, June 17.

To-day’s official German communiqué, published in Berlin, says :-

North of the lake at Bellewaarde we have recaptured the greater part of the trenches which we lost the day before yesterday.

The British and French yesterday continued their attempts to break through. To the north of La Bassée Canal the British, in hand-to-hand fighting, were overpowered by our Westphalian troops and were forced to beat a hasty retreat from their positions.

The French are continually directing fresh attacks against our front from west of Liévin to Arras. On the Lorette height a trench which had been completely destroyed was abandoned to the French. South of Souchez they succeeded in gaining a footing in our position on a front of 850 yards. Fighting there is proceeding.

Yesterday’s attacks, which were conducted regardless of the waste of ammunition and of very heavy losses, thus again terminated with the defeat of the British and French. The hand-to-hand fights, in which we were victorious, again prove the brilliant bravery and the dauntless perseverance of our troops.

French attacks near Moulin-sous-Touvent also failed. Here we captured five officers and 300 men.

In the Vosges vigorous fighting was proceeding yesterday between the valleys of Fecht and the Lauch, but it came to an end in the evening. Apart from a slight loss of ground to the north-west of Metzeral, we maintained our positions. We also captured 100 prisoners.

The assertion made in the French official report of yesterday that the Cathedral of Reims has been bombarded with incendiary shells is untrue. Our fire was directed against the eastern barracks and the battery near the railway triangle, north of Reims, which had vigorously bombarded our positions.

Reuter.