The British Ministry of Defense claimed on Thursday that Russia had withdrawn some troops after suffering a “big loss” recently.
so update “Ukrainian troops continue to fight back north of Kharkov and recapture some towns and villages towards the Russian border,” the ministry claimed on social media.
“Despite Russia’s success in surrounding Kharkov in the early stages of the conflict, Russia reportedly withdrew its troops from the region to reorganize and replenish its troops after a major loss,” the agency said. Said referring to the second largest city located in northeastern Ukraine near the Russian border.
However, “the withdrawal of Russian troops from Kharkiv Oblast is an implicit recognition that Russia cannot occupy major Ukrainian cities that were expecting limited resistance from the population,” the ministry continued. rice field.
These withdrawn units will be sent “probably” to the Siverskyi Donets to form a blockade “to protect the western side of Russia’s main concentration and the main supply routes for operations near Izyum.” I added that.
Russian military officials have not made public comments after the British assessment.
Meanwhile, it comes because Moscow threatened to retaliate against Finland after showing that the Scandinavian country wanted to join NATO’s security alliance. Finland, which borders Russia and remains neutral during the Soviet era, said Thursday that it would apply for NATO “without delay”, and Sweden is expected to follow suit.
NATO Secretary-General Jason Stoltenberg said Finns were “warmly welcomed” and promised a “smooth and swift” accession process. French President Emmanuel Macron said he fully supported Finland’s choice to join the alliance.
However, through state media, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the Finnish proclamation would provoke a negative reaction from Russia.
“There are current instructions from the President to make a list of measures to strengthen our western side in connection with the strengthening of NATO’s eastern side,” he told state media on Thursday.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry said Moscow would be forced to take “retaliation measures of both military and technical and other qualities” and did not provide further details. Russian officials have talked about potential measures in the past, including deploying nuclear-armed missiles in the Baltic Sea.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has long stated that NATO is trying to expand its borders to put military pressure on Moscow. He quoted the claim as the main reason for the invasion of Ukraine and described it as a “special military operation.”
Reuters contributed to this report.