Skip to content
Edit post

Construction of fortifications around Vovchansk was 'difficult,' official says

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk May 13, 2024 1:28 PM 2 min read
A police car drives past a destroyed building in Vovchansk, Kharkiv Oblast, on May 11, 2024. (Francis Farrell/The Kyiv Independent).
This audio is created with AI assistance

Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.

Become a member Support us just once

The construction of fortifications around the border town of Vovchansk in Kharkiv Oblast was "difficult" due to constant Russian shelling, Tamaz Gambarashvili, the head of Vovchansk City Military Administration, told Radio Svoboda on May 13.

Vovchansk, situated less than 5 kilometers (3 miles) from the Russian border, is currently a key focus of Russia's renewed push into Kharkiv Oblast.

Russia launched the offensive operation on May 10 after carrying out intense aerial strikes in the direction of Vovchansk on May 9.

Ukraine's General Staff said in a statement early on May 13 that Russia has "tactical success" in the fight for Vovchansk.

Fortifications in the area were built and strengthened after the town was liberated from Russian occupation in September 2022, "but the situation was and is extremely difficult" due to the close proximity of Vovchansk to the Russian border, Gambarashvili said.

"Vovchansk has been under constant shelling for a year and a half after deoccupation," which made it difficult to carry out construction work, Gambarashvili said. "It is very dangerous to work under shelling."

The construction of fortifications was "perhaps not so tight," Gambarashvili added.

Vovchansk, which had a population of almost 17,000 before the full-scale invasion, came under Russian occupation in February 2022. The town was liberated on Sept. 11, 2022, during Ukraine’s successful counteroffensive in Kharkiv Oblast.

President Volodymyr Zelensky told the Kyiv Independent during a press conference in December 2023 that the most powerful fortifications had been constructed in Kharkiv Oblast.

Civilians flee Vovchansk under Russian bombardment as ground offensive on Kharkiv begins
Vovchansk is ground zero of Russia’s new offensive into Kharkiv Oblast, the first time a serious push has been made to take territory across the border since the area was liberated from Russian occupation in 2022.
Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.
Freedom can be costly. Both Ukraine and its journalists are paying a high price for their independence. Support independent journalism in its darkest hour. Support us for as little as $1, and it only takes a minute.
visa masterCard americanExpress

News Feed

Ukraine Daily
News from Ukraine in your inbox
Ukraine news
Please, enter correct email address
MORE NEWS

Editors' Picks

Enter your email to subscribe
Please, enter correct email address
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Successfuly subscribed
Thank you for signing up for this newsletter. We’ve sent you a confirmation email.