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Russia expands active combat zone by 70 km - Ukraine's army chief

Russia expands active combat zone by 70 km - Ukraine's army chief Photo: Ukrainian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi (Getty Images)
Author: Liliana Oleniak

Russia has expanded the combat zone by 70 kilometers to force Ukraine to use reserve brigades. Heavy fighting continues in the Kharkiv region, according to Ukrainian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi and a report from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The Commander-in-Chief notes that he was working in the units involved in the fighting in the Kharkiv region.

"Russia has expanded the area of active combat operations by almost 70 kilometers, thus trying to force us to use additional brigades from the reserve. The enemy has focused its main efforts on the direction of Strilecha-Lyptsi and the capture of Vovchansk, with further access to Bilyi Kolodiazh and the launch of an offensive to the rear of our troops," notes Syrskyi.

The Russians have reinforced the Sever group of troops, which includes combat units of the 6th Army, 11th and 44th Army Corps. Russia launched an offensive earlier, when it noticed the redeployment of Ukrainian forces, but failed to break through the defense.

Situation at frontline

The General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces reports that 60 combat engagements have taken place at the front since the beginning of the day. As of 10:30 a.m., 20 combat engagements are still ongoing.

In the Kharkiv direction, there was a firefight in the vicinity of Starytsia. The situation in Vovchansk is under control. The Ukrainian Armed Forces are reinforcing their defensive positions and improving the tactical situation in certain areas.

Russian attacks continue in the Kupiansk direction. Ukrainian troops are conducting assault operations to improve the tactical situation in the direction of Synkivka-Vilshany.

In the Siversk direction, five combat engagements took place, and no positions were lost.

In the Kramatorsk and Pokrovsk directions, Russia tried to break through the Ukrainian Armed Forces' defenses six times each, in the Kurakhove direction there were seven attacks, in the Vremivsk direction - one, and the Prydniprovsk direction - four Russian attacks were repelled.

Russia's offensive in Kharkiv region

On the night of May 10, the Russian army launched a second offensive in the north of Kharkiv region. The epicenter of the fighting was the city of Vovchansk, which was previously occupied by Russia but liberated by Ukraine in the fall of 2022.

The Russians managed to reach the outskirts of Vovchansk. However, the Ukrainian Armed Forces stopped Russia's advance and counterattacked.

According to President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the deepest point of Russia's advance in the Kharkiv region is 10 kilometers. According to him, the Russian occupiers have reached the first of three defense lines.