General Staff: Ukraine thwarts Russia's attempts to gain foothold in Vovchansk

Ukrainian troops thwarted Russia's plans to gain a foothold in deeper urban areas in the town of Vovchansk in Kharkiv Oblast, Ukraine's General Staff reported on May 16.

Russia launched a new offensive with a reported 30,000 troops on May 10, targeting Kharkiv Oblast, which is situated near the two countries' shared border in northeastern Ukraine.

Ukrainian forces stabilized the situation on May 15 in the region amid Russia's attempts to break through, President Volodymyr Zelensky said.

Russian troops were "partially pushed out" from the town and "significantly decreased their activity" in the Kharkiv sector as of the morning of May 16, the General Staff said.

Read also: Russia’s new Kharkiv offensive pushes Vovchansk to the brink of annihilation

"The enemy's plans to advance deeper into the town of Vovchansk and gain a foothold there were thwarted," according to the military.

Ukrainian units continue to conduct combat missions within the urban area of Vovchansk's northern outskirts, keeping Russian soldiers under fire control, according to the General Staff.

"The operations are ongoing; the situation is under control," the statement read.

As the evacuation from Vovchansk continues, Russian troops have begun "hunting" for cars with civilians and police using FPV drones, Serhii Bolvinov, the head of the investigative department of Kharkiv Oblast police, told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty's (RFE/RL) on May 16.

A total of 8,779 civilians in Kharkiv Oblast have been evacuated from their homes amid heavy fighting in the region, regional governor Oleh Syniehubov reported on May 16.

The fighting is also reportedly ongoing in the Kupiansk, Siversk, Kramatorsk, Pokrovsk, and Kurakhove sectors.

We’ve been working hard to bring you independent, locally-sourced news from Ukraine. Consider supporting the Kyiv Independent.