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War in Ukraine. Dramatic situation in Vovchansk in the Kharkiv region

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The Russian offensive on Vovchansk and surrounding towns in the Kharkiv Oblast in eastern Ukraine is underway. Local authorities say that about a hundred people remain in the city, but also emphasize that “the enemy did not capture the city.” The evacuation of residents is hampered by constant shelling.

The Ukrainian news agency UNIAN, citing information from local authorities, reported that Vovchansk, located in eastern Ukraine, in the Kharkiv region, was practically completely destroyed by the Russians. The city is located less than 10 kilometers from the border with the Belgorod Oblast of the Russian Federation and 50 km from Kharkov.

In a city where over 17,000 people lived, about a hundred remained.

Vovchansk under fire

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The Russians have been attacking the border areas of the Kharkiv Oblast since May 10. According to Ukrainian and Western sources, Russian troops intend to create a 10-kilometer buffer zone in the Kharkiv Oblast, which would put Kharkiv within the range of Russian barrel artillery, while Russian logistics centers would be beyond the reach of Ukrainian troops.

Read also: Media: Ukraine has asked for permission to use American weapons on Russian territory

The head of the Center for Counteracting Disinformation, Andriy Kovalenko, said that the Russians “continue to raze the city to the ground” using guided aerial bombs. He noted, however, that “the enemy did not complete his task and did not capture the city.”

The Russians attack Vovchansk in the Kharkiv OblastLibkos/Getty Images

Vowczansk destroyed by the RussiansLibkos/Getty Images

Evacuation

The head of the Kharkiv Oblast authorities, Oleh Syniehubov, stated that the evacuation of civilians in the fighting areas of the Kharkov Oblast was ongoing. He added that “about a hundred people remain in Vovchansk, and even fewer in the town of Lypci in the Kharkiv region.”

He noted that evacuation from the northern part of Wowczańska “is no longer possible.” – Police officers and volunteers operating in the southern part of the city are involved in the evacuation process, despite the shelling, said Syniehubov.

See also: Ukraine. The most important events of the last hours

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, commenting on the situation on the front in the Kharkiv region, reported that “although the enemy tried to break through the defense twice, Ukrainian soldiers are keeping the situation under control.”

“Our defenders in some areas are conducting assault operations to improve the tactical position, and are also carrying out combing operations. In the area of ​​the city of Vovchansk, Ukrainian units are strengthening defense to improve the tactical position,” the Ukrainian army reports.

Evacuation of civilians near the city of VovchanskPAP/Mykola Kalyeniak

Prosecutor's Office: The Russians shot at the car in which civilians were escaping

The Prosecutor General's Office reported today on Telegram that four civilians who were trying to leave Vovchansk came under fire.

“According to the investigation, on May 16, four civilians tried to leave Vovchansk by car. On their way through the city, they came under enemy fire. The 70-year-old driver and 83-year-old passenger died on the spot. The driver's wife and another passenger were injured,” the release reads.

Preparatory proceedings were initiated into a case of violation of the laws and customs of war in connection with premeditated murder.

Main photo source: Libkos/Getty Images



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