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We drastically need to buy mines for out extended field of battle ... reporting from Vovchansk

The Russians simply walked in, Ukrainian troops in Kharkiv tell BBC

Denys wants to know what happened to Ukraine's defences.

"There was no first line of defence. We saw it. The Russians just walked in. They just walked in, without any mined fields" he says.

He shows me video from a drone feed taken a few days ago of small columns of Russian troops simply walking across the border, unopposed.

He says officials had claimed that defences were being built at huge cost, but in his view, those defences simply weren't there. "Either it was an act of negligence, or corruption. It wasn't a failure. It was a betrayal".

Everyone knew that this incursion was likely to happen. Both Ukrainian and Western intelligence knew Russia had been building forces across the border - with estimates of it massing up to 30,000 troops.

President Vladimir Putin had also publicly stated his goal to create a buffer zone inside Kharkiv region to protect Russian territory from Ukrainian artillery strikes.

But Ukraine appears to have been ill-prepared - despite official denials.

Denys, speaking from a park in Kharkiv, says within an hour he'll be back on the front line with his men close to the town of Vovchansk, just 5km (3 miles) from the Russian border.

Battlegroup North liberates four settlements in Kharkov Region in past day | TASS |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun May 12th, 2024 at 07:31:25 PM EST

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