‘Prestigious’ Russian anti-Nato unit withdraws from Kharkiv

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The British Ministry of Defense (MoD) has said that a Russian unit leading a “counter-attack” in the event of a war with NATO has been withdrawn from Ukraine’s Kharkiv province.

According to the Defense Ministry, Russia’s 1st Guards Tank Army (1 GTA), which had suffered heavy losses at the start of the offensive, was one of the divisions to abandon positions in the Northeast province after the Ukrainian advance.

“The 1st GTA was one of Russia’s most prestigious armies, allocated to the defense of Moscow, and intended to counterattack in case of war with NATO,” the MoD said in a statement.

It added that Russia’s Western Military District (WEMD), under which 1GTA is under, has been significantly weakened by nearly seven months of war.

“With the 1st GTA and other WEMD formations severely undermined, Russia’s conventional force designed to counter NATO has been severely weakened. Russia is likely to take years to rebuild this capability, MoD said.

In what Western analysts believe may be a turning point in the conflict, Ukraine has succeeded in retaking large swathes of areas in the country’s northeast.

Speaking late on Monday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said his troops had liberated more than 2,300 square miles of land in less than two weeks.

A Ukrainian military intelligence spokesman said Russian troops were surrendering en masse because “they understand the desperation of their position”.

Oleksey Erestovich, one of Mr. Zelensky’s advisers, claimed that there were so many POWs that Ukraine was running out of place to contain them.

Reports suggest that the Ukrainian army is making good progress in the Kharkiv and Kherson regions.

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said Kyiv troops were making “impressive gains” in Kherson, while a Ukrainian deputy defense minister said his country’s troops were advancing from Kharkiv province.

“The objective is to liberate Kharkiv region and beyond – all territories occupied by the Russian Federation. The fighting continues (in Kharkiv region). It is too early to say that full (Ukrainian) control over Kharkiv region has been established,” Hannah Mallya said.

Credit: www.independent.co.uk /

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