UKRAINE, KHARKIV, July 11 — In May and June, the Ukrainian army stopped the Russian offensive on Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, located very close to the Russian border, said President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a speech at the Ronald Reagan Institute in America.

Russia started their new offensive north and northeast in the Kharkiv region in May, but Ukrainian troops have stabilized the frontline in this section since. Now, heavy battles are ongoing in and around Vovchansk (three miles from the border, 46 miles away from Kharkiv) and near Lyptsi (six miles from the border, 12 miles from Kharkiv.)

The Russian army received orders to enter the zone of artillery fire to shell Kharkiv. However, “the courage of our men and women, as well as America’s permission to strike military targets in Russia, did their job,” Zelenskyy said.

The President noted that the Ukrainian military stopped the Russian offensive and continued to push the Russian army out of the areas near Kharkiv. He also mentioned the destruction of Russian missile launchers that had been firing at Kharkiv daily for more than two years. 

“Imagine how much we can achieve when all restrictions are lifted. Similarly, we can protect our cities from Russian guided bombs if the American leadership allows us to destroy Russian military aircraft at their bases,” Zelenskyy addressed the Americans.

The President is confident that if the U.S. leadership provides an opportunity for deep strikes against Russian military and logistics facilities in Crimea, it will help to significantly limit Russia’s actions in southern Ukraine and push it out of there.

British Prime Minister Keir Starmer, who arrived in Washington for the NATO summit, assured that Ukraine could use British Storm Shadow missiles to strike Russian military targets.

This is the first time that the UK has explicitly stated that it allows Ukraine to use its weapons to strike throughout Russia.

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  • The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported on June 12 that the Ukrainian forces targeted one S-300 air defense battery and two S-400 air defense batteries near occupied Belbek and Sevastopol in Crimea overnight.