Ukraine reclaims seven villages in counteroffensive against Russian forces

Ukraine’s counteroffensive against Russian forces in the south and east of the country has reportedly made progress, with seven villages reclaimed since the weekend. Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar confirmed the recapture of these settlements, encompassing a total area of 90 square kilometres (35 sq miles) along the front line. However, these gains represent only a small portion of the territory Ukraine must regain from Russian occupation.

In a verified video, Ukrainian soldiers were seen raising their flag in Storozheve village, after overcoming enemy resistance. One unidentified fighter described the process of recapturing the village as slow and challenging, with progress made house by house.

Meanwhile, Russia claimed to have repelled Ukrainian attacks in various areas. According to Vladimir Rogov, an official with the Moscow-installed administration of the Zaporizhia region, heavy battles involving Russian artillery, mortars and air power are ongoing. Military correspondent Alexander Kots reported that Ukrainian forces are attempting to advance towards the town of Staromlinovka, despite significant losses.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy acknowledged the difficulty of the battles, but emphasised the importance of continued movement. He also mentioned the challenges posed by rainy weather and the need to strengthen certain points of the front.

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Western military analysts have cautioned against drawing conclusions about the counteroffensive too early, suggesting that Ukraine may still be testing Russian defences. The US-based Institute for the Study of War described Ukraine’s task as an “extraordinarily difficult tactical operation” and urged against over-interpreting initial assault results.

Former commander of US forces in Europe, Ben Hodges, believes that the main attack will involve several hundred tanks and infantry fighting vehicles. While Russia has not yet faced such an onslaught, its unconvincing performance on the battlefield since the invasion has led to frequent changes of command and disputes with private militias.

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Matthew Coles

Matthew is a British journalist with a unique flair in reporting about the latest news and events happening in Europe. Matthew focuses on producing well-researched, balanced, and narrative-driven content related to both national and regional interests across various European countries. He is passionate about discovering the diverse cultures found within Europe and showcasing them through his insightful articles.

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