UKRAINE, KHARKIV OBLAST, May 20 — Police, rescuers, and volunteers have evacuated 10,537 people from Chuhuiv, Kharkiv, and Bohoduhiv districts located in the north of Kharkiv Oblast, Kharkiv Governor Oleh Syniehubov reported in his Telegram channel. 

Border towns and villages in Kharkiv Oblast have come under more frequent missile, drone, and glide bomb attacks since Russia launched a new offensive in the region on May 10. 

Syniehubov said that the pace of evacuation in the Kharkiv region slowed, but people are still being evacuated. According to Syniehubov, about 100 people remain in Vovchansk, and fewer are still in the Lyptsi direction. 

“We can’t evacuate [people] from the northern part of Vovchansk, where enemy’s forces are,” Syneihubov said. “But evacuation continues from Lyptsi direction and the southern part of Vovchansk. [We keep] receiving requests for evacuation [from there.]”   

Field report: Threat of reoccupation looms over Vovchansk as Russia launches new offensive on Kharkiv region. Gwara Media joined the evacuation mission on May 11 to talk to people who were leaving Vovchansk in the wake of the Russian assault on the city.  

Russians keep conducting assaults in the Lyptsi and Vovchansk direction. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin claimed Russia aims to create a gray zone in the borderlands of Kharkiv region to “protect” Belgorod Oblast.

The city of Vovchansk, located 5 km (3 miles) from the state border and about 60 km (38 miles) from Kharkiv, is currently contested between Russian and Ukrainian armies. According to Roman Semenukha, a deputy head of the region’s administration, 60% of the city is “under Armed Forces of Ukraine’s control.” 

On May 19, the Russian shelling of Vovchansk killed a 63-year-man.  

Oleh Syneihubov said the Ukrainian army “fights for almost every street” in Vovchansk and noted that the situation with a frontline north of Kharkiv Oblast is stabilized.  

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