Ukrainian service members prepare to transport a Russian tank captured during a counteroffensive operation in Kharkiv region


  • About 150 Russian soldiers fled Borshchova and Artemivka in Kharkiv Oblast
  • Russian soldiers fled in at least 19 stolen cars
  • The Ukrainian army has retaken more than 1,100 square miles of territory in Kharkiv

Russian troops have now fled several areas in the Ukrainian region of Kharkiv following a successful counteroffensive operation by the Armed Forces of Ukraine, a report by the General Staff of the Ukrainian forces said.

As of Sunday, about 150 Russian soldiers have fled from the villages of Borshchova and Artemivka in two buses, one truck and at least 19 stolen cars as members of the Ukrainian army continued to make gains in the region.

A similar situation was observed among Russian soldiers occupying the city of Svatove in Luhansk Oblast. The troops fled the area in four Kamaz trucks, 20 Tiger armored cars and 20 vehicles stolen from locals.

"As a result of the successful counteroffensive of our troops in the Kharkiv direction, the Russian troops frantically leave their positions and flee with the loot deep into the temporarily occupied territories or into the territory of the Russian Federation," the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (UAF) wrote in a report published Sunday.

The report comes as the Ukrainian military gains a foothold in temporarily occupied Kharkiv. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the army successfully retook 1,158 square miles of territory between Thursday and Saturday and entered the supply towns of Izyum and Kupiansk in Kharkiv Oblast, according to BBC.

The International Business Times could not independently verify the report. However, the U.K. Ministry of Defense on Sunday said Russia has "likely withdrawn units from" the Kharkiv region, adding that fighting continues around the cities of Izyum and Kupiansk.

Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, also said Moscow's troops would be regrouped from Kharkiv's Balakliya and Izyum areas to the eastern Donetsk region.

"In order to achieve the goals of the special military operation, a decision was made to regroup troops in the areas of Balakliya and Izyum in order to build up efforts in the Donetsk direction," Konashenkov said in a statement.

Konashenkov's statement is similar to what the Kremlin said earlier in the invasion after it pulled back forces and refocused its efforts on the eastern Ukrainian regions after failing to take over Kyiv.

As of Sunday, the Russian forces have lost 52,650 soldiers, according to estimates from the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.

Russian servicemen
Russian servicemen stand guard at the destroyed part of the Ilyich Iron and Steel Works in Ukraine's port city of Mariupol OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP via Getty Images