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Situation in Kharkiv region and places of major battles: Map of gray zones

Situation in Kharkiv region and places of major battles: Map of gray zones Photo: Ukrainian artillery stopped the breakthrough in the Kharkiv region (Getty Images)

Russian forces have crossed the Ukrainian border in two additional locations and are advancing in the Kharkiv region. Battles are taking place towards Kharkiv and the city of Vovchansk.

For more details on the situation and where the battles are taking place, see the material from RBC-Ukraine.

Sources: analysis and maps from the DeepState project, statements from President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Chief of the Kharkiv Regional Military Administration Oleh Syniehubov, information from the Telegram channel of the head of the Center for Countering Disinformation of the National Security and Defense Council Andrii Kovalenko, and information from the Ministry of Defense.


Battles in the direction of Kharkiv and Vovchansk: Where the new gray zones are

In the morning of May 10th, Russian forces intensified attacks on border settlements from various means of impact. Shelling continues, drones and electronic warfare systems are being used.

Fighting is taking place in two areas. The enemy is attempting to advance towards Kharkiv and consolidate positions in villages along the Strilecha - Krasne - Pylna - Borysivka line. In the direction of Vovchansk, attempts are being made to enter the villages of Hatyshche and Pletenivka.

These areas are already marked as gray zones on the maps of the Ukrainian portal DeepState.

Situation in Kharkiv region and places of major battles: Map of gray zones

map of new gray zones in the Kharkiv region (

According to analysts' estimates, the Russians are advancing with infantry supported by a small amount of equipment. They do not dare to move further from the aforementioned settlements. It is possible that they are waiting for their main forces.

The forces their opponent has thrown into battle will not be sufficient for a deep advance. However, it is uncertain how many resources they are willing to engage in this maneuver. The main goal may be the destabilization of the border areas. Such actions were not unexpected, and the Defense Forces are exerting maximum effort to repel the attack.

As noted by the Ministry of Defense, over the course of the day, the Russian troops in the Vovchansk direction struck with guided aerial bombs. Overnight, artillery fire intensified, and around 05:00 a.m., there was an attempt to breach the Ukrainian defense line under the cover of armored vehicles.

By 01:00 p.m., all attacks had been repelled, and battles of varying intensity are ongoing. Additional reserve units have been deployed to reinforce this section of the front. The defense forces are holding the pressure.

Additionally, a photo of destroyed Russian equipment north of the villages of Morokhovets and Oliinykove has appeared online.

Що відбувається в Харківській області та де точаться бої: карта "сірих зон"

Photo: destroyed Russian equipment (

Evacuation instructions and where to seek assistance

Oleh Syniehubov, the Head of the Kharkiv Regional Military Administration, describes the enemy's attempt to break through as unsuccessful.

"We haven't lost an inch. The enemy's grouping poses no threat to Kharkiv; their strength is only enough for provocations in the northern direction," he added, urging civilians to seek shelter.

Meanwhile, shelling in the border zone continues. As a result, five people were injured in Vovchansk, and another person died under the rubble of a private house. Additionally, during the shelling of the village of Cherkaski Tyshky, a 55-year-old man was killed, while no one was injured in Buhaivka.

Evacuation has begun in bordering settlements. Specifically, military, police, and volunteers are assisting with the evacuation from Vovchansk and surrounding villages.

"The majority of people are leaving using their own transportation. However, together with the humanitarian center, we are organizing transportation for locals who don't have their own vehicles," stated Tamaz Gambarashvili, the head of the military administration in Vovchansk.

Combat situation and Zelenskyy's reaction

Right now, battles are taking place just one or two kilometers from the Russian border. It's worth noting that the gray zone refers to territory that is not fully controlled by either side. Typically, positions in this area can quickly change hands.

When asked if Russian military personnel are present in the Kharkiv and Chuhuev districts, Syniehubov responded that practically all populated areas near the border with the Russian Federation are in the gray zone.

"We are saying that combat operations are taking place on their territory. Yes, the enemy can enter a certain territory, battles then take place, and the enemy is destroyed there," he clarified.

He also reiterated that Ukrainian brigades met the Russian troops with fire in response, and Ukrainian territory losses were not allowed. According to him, the situation cannot be compared to February 24, 2022 (when Russia occupied a significant part of the Kharkiv region on the first day of the full-scale war). This is partly because the military is using purpose-built defensive lines, and the adversary can only attack with small groups and test the positions of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy commented on the Russian breakthrough attempt. He confirmed that the enemy had started another wave of counteroffensive actions in this direction. They were stopped by artillery fire, and intense artillery battles have been ongoing since 07:00-08:00 a.m.

"It's important that they (the Russians forces - ed.) can still reinforce, that's a fact. But our military command knew about this and planned their forces to meet the enemy with fire," the president added.

Andrii Kovalenko, the head of the Information Resistance Center of the National Security and Defense Council, warns that there may be many false reports in the media about Russian intentions to capture Kharkiv. The situation is under control and is similar to simulating a large-scale offensive.

Currently, enemy resources are focused on creating an information storm. The situation may dynamically change, so trust should only be placed in official sources. At the moment, from the areas where the occupiers are entering, defense forces are trying to drive them out.

Reason for the Russian assault

Reuters cites a quote from an unnamed high-ranking Ukrainian source. According to the source, the Russians conducted a ground attack in the northeast of the Kharkiv region and advanced a kilometer near Vovchansk to create a buffer zone.

As part of these actions, the occupiers will attempt to push the Ukrainian Defense Forces back 10 kilometers from the border. It's noteworthy that in mid-March, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced plans to create a so-called sanitary zone purportedly to halt strikes on the Belgorod region.

Military expert Vladyslav Seleznyov refers to the events of May 10 as reconnaissance by combat aimed at finding weaknesses in the Ukrainian defense. Vovchansk is well fortified, but control over it depends on the resources Russia throws into its capture. Predicting anything is difficult, but it's unlikely the occupiers will stop, and preparations need to be made for new attacks in the northeast of the Kharkiv region. As for the regional center, there is currently no threat of a major RF offensive.

Read more in the material 10 km out of Russian border: What is happening in Vovchansk and threat for northern Kharkiv region.