Russia will actively conduct shock and assault operations in Kharkiv Oblast for next 1.5 months

Russian invaders will actively conduct shock and assault operations in the Kharkiv oblast for the next month and a half
Russian invaders will actively conduct shock and assault operations in the Kharkiv oblast for the next month and a half

Russian invaders will actively carry out shock and assault operations in Kharkiv Oblast for the next month and a half, drone brigade commander, Yuriy Fedotenko, told Ukraine's Espreso TV on May 15.

Fedotenko is the commander of the 'Achilles' aerial combat systems battalion - the Ivan Sirko 92nd Assault Brigade

"It is important to understand that the enemy has a small time frame — a month and a half -  before (Ukraine's) Defense Forces receive the maximum amount of equipment (from Ukraine's international partners)," he said.

"Then we will be able to deprive the enemy of the opportunity to carry out shock and assault actions on most stretches. That is why the enemy will quite actively conduct shock and assault operations in Kharkiv Oblast over the next month and a half."

Read also: Kharkiv official on frontline fortifications — interview

Russians will use reserves and all available weapons, he said.

"This should be understood, in particular, by Kharkiv residents who live in the city," he warned.

"You need to listen to the sirens, be as attentive and careful as possible, avoid crowded places, and still try to take care of yourself ... Everyone is used to the war, used to the shellings, but you always have to go to the shelter."

The enemy intends to completely destroy Ukrainian statehood, he added.

"These ambitions of the Russians remain to this day," he said.

"Donetsk and Luhansk remain priority oblasts. In order for the enemy, in their opinion, to advance as fast as possible through the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, it was necessary to withdraw a certain amount of forces to direct hostilities in another place."

Russian propaganda supports this by saying that Kharkiv is a very important place, he said.

Read also: Situation in Kharkiv Oblast remains ‘critical’ – military expert

"That's why they started crossing the state border and storming positions in Kharkiv Oblast," he said.

"It is also an extremely important strategic city for us. Therefore, one way or another, the Defense Forces will deploy reserves there."

The enemy will not have significant tactical successes on the battlefield, he believes.

"They were ready to meet the enemy," he said.

"This applies to engineering and fortification structures and the personnel and equipment used for the defense of Kharkiv Oblast."

Thanks to international military assistance, Ukraine will be able to strike the enemy forces more thoroughly, he said.

"This means aviation, which uses guided air bombs and various launchers to bombard both the city of Kharkiv and frontline positions. It will be difficult, but we will definitely persevere."

Russian advance in Kharkiv Oblast

The Russians have heavily shelled border settlements in Kharkiv Oblast.

Russian troops initiated a new wave of counteroffensives on this front, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said while announcing the redeployment of Ukrainian forces to the Kharkiv sector.

Read also: Russian assault troops suffer major losses near Kharkiv - up to 70% are casualties

Russia had tactical successes near Vovchansk on May 13, the Ukrainian Armed Forces General Staff said, adding that the situation on the Kharkiv front remained difficult.

The attack on Vovchansk and an attempt to encircle the city is a priority goal of Russian troops, the Institute for the Study of War believes.

Vovchansk was almost completely destroyed by relentless Russian shelling on May 14, local authorities reported, adding that the situation in the city is critical.

Russian invaders were taking positions on the streets of Vovchansk on May 15, Vochchansk's patrol police chief, Oleksiy Kharkivsky, reported.

The advance of Russian troops into northern Vovchansk was later confirmed by Ukraine's General Staff.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine