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You are here News International Ukraine warns northern front has ‘significantly worsened’ as Russia claims capture of several villages

Ukraine warns northern front has ‘significantly worsened’ as Russia claims capture of several villages

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KharkivUkraine’s top general says the situation in the northern Kharkiv region has “significantly worsened” after Russia claimed to have captured four further villages as it expanded its surprise cross-border offensive.

A Ukrainian regional official insisted Russia’s progress was not yet “significant” but admitted ground fighting in the area was spreading. Meanwhile, speaking on British television, UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron acknowledged it was an “extremely dangerous moment,” adding that Russia had effectively “invaded [Ukraine] again.”

The precise goal of Russia’s new push – which began in the early hours of Friday morning – is unclear. It may be to create a buffer zone designed to reduce Ukrainian attacks on Russian territory, or possibly even a renewed assault on the city of Kharkiv, 30 kilometers (18 miles) to the south.

Equally, it could be an attempt to draw Ukrainian forces away from other key Russian objectives further south – which was the rationale Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky offered in his Sunday evening address.

“The idea behind the attacks in Kharkiv region is to stretch our forces and undermine morale and the motivational foundations of Ukrainians’ ability to defend ourselves,” he said.

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