Kharkiv offensive: Ukrainian army says it has tripled retaken area
Ukraine’s military claims that following a quick counteroffensive in the east of the country, its soldiers had retaken nearly 3,000 sq km (1,158 sq miles). If the impressive advance is true, Kyiv’s soldiers will have tripled their claimed gains in just over 48 hours.
President Zelensky stated the area to be 1,000 sq km on Thursday night and 2,000 sq km on Saturday night. Journalists have been barred access to the front lines, and the BBC is unable to confirm the Ukrainian figures.
Ukrainian army entered the crucial Russian-held supply towns of Izyum and Kupiansk on Saturday during the eastern counterattack. However, violence has persisted outside of those towns, according to UK defence officials. Ukrainian military, according to officials in Kiev, are battling to take control of several nearby communities.
The Russian defence ministry stated that its forces had left Kupiansk and Izyum, which would allow them to “regroup” in areas controlled by separatists backed by Moscow.
Additionally, the Russian ministry acknowledged the removal of forces from Balaklyia, a third significant town, in order to “bolster efforts” on the Donetsk front. On Friday, Ukrainian forces entered the town.
The speed of the counterattack caught the Russians off guard, and Ramzan Kadyrov, the leader of Chechnya and a fervent Putin supporter, seemed to question Moscow’s military plan.
In a message shared on Telegram, Mr. Kadyrov warned that if Russia’s circumstances did not improve, he would be forced to interrogate the country’s authorities about what was going on.
On Saturday, the leader of the administration that Russia has put in the Kharkiv region suggested that its citizens leave for Russia in order to “save lives.”
Unverified social media video appeared to show long traffic lines forming at border crossings. Vyacheslav Gladkov, the governor of Russia’s Belgorod border area, claimed that “thousands” of migrants had entered the nation.
The military chief of Ukraine, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi, reported that his troops had moved to within 50 kilometres (31 miles) of the Russian border.
However, Russians still control about 5% of the nation, and few people think that the war will finish quickly.
Oleksii Reznikov, the defence minister of Ukraine, praised his forces while announcing the possibility of a Russian counterattack in an interview with the Financial Times.
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