Ukraine warns situation in northern front has “significantly worsened” as Russia captures nine villages

Following Russia’s move to capture nine villages in a fresh ground assault in a cross-border offensive, Ukraine warned the situation in the northern Kharkiv region has “significantly worsened”, reported CNN.

Russia on Sunday said it has captured nine villages in total over the weekend, as Ukraine said fighting was ongoing and it was repelling attacks.
Moreover, hundreds of civilians have been evacuated from near the frontlines.
The Russian forces began their surprise cross-border attack on Friday, making two assaults inside northern Ukraine, as reported by CNN.
Following this, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called a “new wave of counteroffensive actions” by Russia.
Russia’s precise goal is unclear, however, Moscow may be trying to create a buffer zone to reduce Ukrainian attacks on Russian territory or try to wear down and divert the attention of Kyiv’s already thinly stretched forces.
Russia’s Ministry of Defense, in a statement, claimed a new military grouping called Sever (North) had “liberated” several villages, wording that reflects Russia’s denial of Ukrainian statehood.
Oleksandr Syrskyi, Ukraine’s army chief, said Sunday that “defensive operations” were ongoing, CNN reported.
“This week, the situation in Kharkiv Oblast has significantly worsened. Currently, there are ongoing battles in the border areas along the state border with the Russian Federation,” Syrskyi stated.
Head of the Kharkiv Regional Military Administration, Ukraine’s Oleh Syniehubov, disputed that the five villages in the Kharkiv Region had been captured.
“Heavy fighting continues in Strilecha, Pylyna, Borysivka, in the area of Oliynykove and Ohirtseve. The fighting continues in the area of those settlements that were actually in the ‘grey zone’ […] There is no threat of a ground operation for Kharkiv. The Defense Forces are doing everything possible to hold their positions. All government agencies are working on the ground,” Syniehubov said.
Notably, the grey zone represents territory currently contested rather than under full Russian or Ukrainian control.
On Saturday, at least three people died after Russian strikes on the Kharkiv region, according to the head of the region’s military administration, CNN reported.
One woman living in Kharkiv, Anna Ivanova, described the situation as “scary.”
In a separate attack, a fire briefly broke out at the Volgograd oil refinery, the largest oil refinery in southern Russia, after a Ukrainian drone attack overnight into Sunday, according to the region’s governor.
“On the night of May 12, air defence and electronic warfare forces repelled a UAV attack on the territory of the Volgograd region,” Andrey Bocharov said in a post shared on Telegram, according to CNN.
“As a result of the consequences of a UAV crash with subsequent detonation, a fire broke out at the Volgograd Refinery site,” he said.
According to the latest update, the fire has been extinguished and there were no casualties, he said.-ANI

Dr. Tulip Duncan

Dr. Tulip Duncan

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