By William Miller, special correspondent in Ukraine, for Eurasia Business News, September 9, 2022

In the battles for Balakliya, the Russian armed forces claim thay have destroyed a group of Ukrainian special forces “Sokol”, reported the publication “Russian Spring” in its Telegram channel.

The Ukrainian troops would suffer heavy losses near Kupyansk, and volunteers massively urge to donate blood for the military advancing near the town of Balakliya, 78 kilometers from Kharkov.

On 6 September 2022, Ukrainian forces launched a counteroffensive towards Balakliya, and have taken the adjacent town of Verbivka.

Local sources reported this week that Ukrainian tanks tried to break through to the city of Kupyansk. “Thick smoke falls over Kupyansk and the Russian air force is firing back. Local residents are leaving the city in the direction of Svatovo, they flee the Ukrainian troops,” said a Russian officer.

On September 8, the Armed Forces of Ukraine launched an offensive in the Kharkov oblast towards the cities of Balakliya, Izyum and Kupyansk. The Ukrainian forces tried to break into the village but were stopped by Rosgvardia units. The offensive continued in a bypass: the Ukrainian troops took control of part of the road between Balakleya and Kupyansk, occupying the village of Volkhov Yar. Kupyansk is now a key railway center for Russian troops.

Ukrainian forfces are trying to exert pressure on the city of Izyum, located in the south of the Kharkov oblast near the administrative border of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR). According to local sources, the situation in the Izyum area is “tense, but under control of Russians.

On 8 September, the Ukrainian flag would have been raised again over the building of the city council of Balakliya.

The head of the Kupyansk civil administration has already announced a partial evacuation of the civilian population.

Read also : Intense fights in the Kherson and Mikolaiv oblasts, Ukraine

The press service of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported today that Russian forces, with high-precision strikes, would have hit the points of deployment of brigades of Ukrainian troops near Kharkov, as a result of which 50 Ukrainian soldiers were killed and 120 wounded. These Ukrainian battalions would have shelled civilian areas.

Kyiv claims that Ukrainian troops have taken back more than 30 settlements in the Kharkov oblast. The General Staff of Ukrainian army reported that the Ukrainian troops are carrying out a successful counteroffensive in the Kharkov direction. In three days the Armed Forces of Ukraine would have advanced 50 km into territory formerly controlled by Russian forces. However, given the current situation in the region, it is difficult to check this claim.

On the evening of September 9, the Russian General Staff announced that it began the transfer of TOS-1A Buratino “Solntsepek” heavy rocket launcher systems in the direction of Kharkov, in order to repel the counteroffensive of the Ukrainian battalions. The Russian Defense Ministry showed a video in which the Russian military is transferring equipment and personnel to the Kharkov direction.

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