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Russia withdraws troops from Kharkiv, silences on Ukrainian offensive

Ucranianos hasteiam bandeira de seu país na cidade de Balakliya, que estava sob controle russo e foi recapturada no início de setembro.
Image taken from video shows Ukrainians hoisting their country’s flag in the town of Balakliya, which was under Russian control and was recaptured in early September. | Photo: Ukraine Defense Ministry handout/EFE/EPA

10133755The Russian Defense Ministry reported this Saturday the “regrouping” of its forces in eastern Ukraine to withdraw them from the Kharkiv region – where the Ukrainian Army is carrying out a successful offensive – and transfer them to the Donetsk region. “To achieve the objectives of the special military operation, a decision was made to regroup troops from the Balakliya and Izyum regions to increase efforts towards Donetsk,” the Russian command said in a statement.

10133755According to the Defense folder, “for three days an operation was carried out to reduce and transfer the group of troops of the Izyum and Balakliya group to the territory of the People’s Republic of Donetsk”, recognized by Moscow two days before the start of the invasion of Ukraine. “A series of distraction maneuvers were carried out with real troop actions. In order to avoid damage to Russian troops, powerful attacks were carried out against the enemy with the participation of aviation, missile troops and artillery”, the note details, also noting that, in the last three days, the Armed Forces “annihilated more than 2 thousand Ukrainian and foreign fighters, in addition to 100 armored vehicles and artillery pieces” .1013375510133755The text mentioned the withdrawal of troops from the Kharkiv region without cite the advances of the Ukrainian offensive in the area. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenksy reported on Friday that the army released more than cities in the last two days, in advances corroborated by the Ukrainian military command. This is Kiev’s first real and successful counteroffensive since the start of the Russian invasion. Balakliya, quoted in the Russian statement, was taken by Ukrainian troops, while part of another city, Kupiansk, was abandoned on Saturday by Russian forces, according to several Ukrainian and pro-Russian bloggers, without the information being confirmed by Moscow.

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