Ukrainians appear to have won battle of Kharkiv, US think tank says

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Ukrainians, battle, Kharkiv, tank

Ukrainian forces “appear to have won” the battle of Kharkiv after they were able to expel Russian troops from around the city, a U.S. defense think tank said Friday.

A report from the Institute for the Study of War said Russian forces had not attempted to hold their ground against Ukraine’s counterattack around Kharkiv over the past several days.

The think tank said the Kremlin appears to be pulling back its troops and looking to replace its military with proxy forces instead of attempting to hold its positions near Kharkiv.

“Ukraine thus appears to have won the battle of Kharkiv,” the institute wrote. “Ukrainian forces prevented Russian troops from encircling, let alone seizing Kharkiv, and then expelled them from around the city, as they did to Russian forces attempting to seize Kyiv.”

Ukrainian defense minister Oleksii Reznikov said in a Facebook post Friday night that the country is “entering a new, long phase of the war” and that he anticipated “extremely tough weeks.”

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