Ukraine launched 'successful' counteroffensive in Kharkiv, could push to Russia's border: US think tank

Russian forces are retreating from the northeast Kharkiv area and notably destroyed several bridges in an effort tosuccessful Ukrainian attack,” the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a Washington D.C.-based group, het Saterdag gesê.

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Armies generally only destroy bridges if they have largely decided they will not attempt to cross the river in the other direction anytime soon; Russian forces are therefore unlikely to launch operations to retake the northeast outskirts of Kharkiv liberated by Ukrainian forces in the near future,” lui die verslag.

A Ukrainian tank drives next to a destroyed Russian vehicle in the Kharkiv region on April 14.

A Ukrainian tank drives next to a destroyed Russian vehicle in the Kharkiv region on April 14. (REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis)

Ukraine’s military success in Kharkiv could force a strategic shift of Rusland’s forces, preventing reinforcements now needed in Kharkiv from providing support in other regions, lui die verslag.

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These potential reinforcements, egter, may still not be enough for Russia to reconquer the region, dit het bygevoeg.

Given the current rate of Ukrainian advances, Russian forces may be unable to prevent Ukrainian forces from reaching the Russian border, even with additional reinforcements,” the ISW verslag doen gesê.

A volunteer of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces inspects a damaged military vehicle in the outskirts Kharkiv, Ukraine's second-largest city, Maandag, Maart 7, 2022.

A volunteer of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces inspects a damaged military vehicle in the outskirts Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, Maandag, Maart 7, 2022. (AP Photo/Andrew Marienko)

Ukrainian counteroffensive demonstrates promising Ukrainian capabilities and may set conditions for further offensive operations into northeastern Kharkiv Oblast,” the report continued.

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In the southeast region of Ukraine, Russia’s militêre has seized Mariupol and could soon annex Kherson or declare the region’s independence from Ukraine, as it did in Donetsk and Luhansk, according to the ISW report.

By all indications, Russian forces will announce the creation of a Kherson People’s Republic or possibly forcibly annex Kherson Oblast in the near future and are intensifying occupation measures in Mariupol,” the report continued. “Russian forces are reportedly increasing their security presence in both Kherson and Mariupol.

Ukrainian soldiers and firefighters search in a destroyed building after a bombing attack in Kyiv, Oekraïne, Maandag, Maart 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)

Ukrainian soldiers and firefighters search in a destroyed building after a bombing attack in Kyiv, Oekraïne, Maandag, Maart 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda) (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)

Pro-Russia politicians in Kherson are also conducting campaigns for the region tostrive to become a subject of Russia” watter “will resemble something close to Crimea in terms of the pace of development,” the report concluded.

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