Ukrainian servicemen fire mortar on front line in Donetsk region


  • Zelensky said the Ukrainian army has made a 'breakthrough' in Kharkiv
  • Ukraine has likely reclaimed the village of Verbivka in Kharkiv, says a report
  • The Russians reportedly abandoned their positions in Bairak and Nova Husarivka

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday said that his country's army has successfully recaptured a number of settlements occupied by Russian forces in the Kharkiv region.

In his daily address, Zelensky said that the Ukrainian army made a "breakthrough" in the northeastern Kharkiv region but added that he cannot yet name the settlements they have recently liberated from the Russian military.

"This week we have good news from the Kharkiv region. Probably, you all have already seen reports about the activity of Ukrainian defenders. And I think every citizen feels proud of our warriors. It is a well-deserved pride, a right feeling," the Ukrainian president said.

Zelensky also expressed gratitude to Ukraine's 406th separate artillery brigade for the "extremely successful hits" in the Russian-occupied territories in the country's southern areas, including Kherson.

"Each success of our military in one direction or another changes the general situation along the entire frontline in favor of Ukraine," he added.

Ukraine began its counteroffensive operations in the southern regions last week, where it also claimed to have liberated several settlements. Since then, Ukrainian forces have made a number of gains.

According to a report published by the U.S.-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW), the Ukrainian army likely recaptured Verbivka, a village located less than three kilometers from the town of Balakliya in Kharkiv Oblast, on Tuesday.

The ISW also noted that the Russian forces who were pushed out of Verbivka destroyed several unspecified bridges in the area with the aim of preventing the Ukrainian army from further advancing its positions.

In addition to securing Verbivka, Ukraine's counteroffensive also forced the Russian army to abandon its positions in Bairak and Nova Husarivka, the report said.

Ukraine is currently hoping to take back most of the Russian-occupied territories in the north and west of the Dnipro River, the Kherson region and Nova Kakhova by the end of the year, senior Ukrainian officials told CNN.

President Volodymyr Zelensky's  pleas for more advanced and powerful weapons have been unsuccessful so far