Eastern Ukraine: Russia announces withdrawal of troops from Kharkiv

eastern Ukraine
Russia announces withdrawal of troops from Kharkiv

Destroyed vehicles stand on a road in the Kharkiv region.  Photo: David Ryder/ZUMA Press Wire/dpa

Destroyed vehicles stand on a road in the Kharkiv region. photo

© David Ryder/ZUMA Press Wire/dpa

With their counter-offensive, the Ukrainian armed forces have recently put considerable pressure on the Russian occupiers in the Kharkiv region. Now the Russians are withdrawing from strategically important places. Observers see this as an escape.

Under pressure from Ukrainian counter-offensives Russia announced the withdrawal of troops from eastern Ukraine. Soldiers should be withdrawn from the Kharkiv region, for example from the strategically important city of Izyum, Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said in Moscow on Saturday. The Russian troops are also to withdraw from the city of Balaklija, which the Ukrainians had reported as liberated last week.

Officially, the withdrawal was justified by the fact that the units in the adjacent area were affected by the regrouping Donetsk are to be reinforced. However, many military experts assume that more than six months after the start of the war, the Russians came under so much pressure in view of the massive Ukrainian advance in the Kharkiv region that they decided to flee.

10,000 Russian soldiers were threatened with encirclement

Earlier on Saturday, the Ukrainian side reported about the recapture of Kupyansk. Because of its direct rail connection to Russia, the small town is important as a transport hub for supplying the entire Russian military association around the south-west Izyum. With the advance of the Ukrainians, more than 10,000 Russian soldiers would have been threatened with encirclement.

Later, the military governor of the eastern Ukrainian region of Luhansk, Serhiy Hajday, reported that their own troops were also advancing there and had already advanced to the outskirts of Lysychansk. Lysychansk was the last major city in the Luhansk region to be conquered by the Russian army in July. Before the invasion of the Ukraine the industrial city had almost 100,000 inhabitants.

Also with the help of Western weapons, the Ukrainian army in August launched a large-scale counteroffensive began. As a result, dozens of villages and several towns in the Kharkiv region were finally liberated from the Russian occupiers.


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