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Military: Russia's Kharkiv Oblast operation aims to divert Ukrainian forces from Donetsk Oblast

by Martin Fornusek May 10, 2024 8:07 PM 2 min read
Ukrainian soldiers ride on an armoured vehicle in Novostepanivka, Kharkiv Oblast, on Sept. 19, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP via Getty Images) 
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The uptick in Russia's activity at Kharkiv Oblast's border is part of a psychological operation aimed at pulling Ukrainian forces away from hot areas in the east, Nazar Voloshyn, the spokesperson of the Khortytsia group of forces, told the Hromadske media outlet on May 10.

Rather than conducting a serious offensive campaign in the north of Kharkiv Oblast, "Russia is trying to pull our (Ukrainian) forces and resources from Donetsk Oblast to Kharkiv Oblast," Voloshyn told Hromadske.

Early on May 10, Ukraine's Defense Ministry reported that Russian forces launched an attempt to break through in Kharkiv Oblast. President Volodymyr Zelensky later confirmed that Russia was carrying out new offensive operations in the area.

"Ukrainian defense forces and military units have the situation under control," Voloshyn said.

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While Ukrainian media reported that Russia captured four border villages and is attempting to advance toward Vovchansk, officials said that no ground was lost at the moment.

Andrii Kovalenko, the head of the counter-disinformation department at Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council, said the Russian operation resembles a simulation of a large-scale attack or reconnaissance-in-force.

Amid the news of fresh hostilities in Kharkiv Oblast, Voloshyn reported that Russian forces are unsuccessfully trying to break through in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, namely near the Serebryanskyi forest and in the Lyman area.

Official: Russia’s Kharkiv Oblast operations resemble ‘simulation of large-scale attack’
Russia’s recently launched operations in Kharkiv Oblast look like a simulation of a large-scale attack with the use of limited resources or reconnaissance-in-force, a senior Ukrainian official said on May 10.
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