To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Russian soldiers are 'refusing to fight' following Ukrainian counter-offensive

Russian soldiers are 'refusing to fight' following Ukrainian counter-offensive

Thousands of Russian soldiers are said to be refusing to fight in Ukraine

Russian soldiers are apparently refusing to fight after a lightning counter-offensive saw Ukraine reportedly recapture 6,000 square kilometres of territory.

Ukraine's counter-offensive pushed Russian forces back up against north-eastern borders, with Moscow describing the retreat as a 'regrouping' to focus on other military targets.

And apparently this potential breakthrough in the war is leading to a collapse in morale among Vladimir Putin's troops.

Videos and images circulating the internet appear to show Russian soldiers lying on the road in surrender as Ukrainian military intelligence said they ‘understand the hopelessness of their situation’.

According to MailOnline, Serhiy Haidai, the governor of Luhansk, said: “Learning about the number of dead [estimated to be up to 43,000], Russian troops are refusing to fight on the territory of Ukraine, payments to the wounded occupiers have been halted.”

He added: “The military command of the Russian Federation suspended the dispatch of new, already formed units to the territory of Ukraine.”

US think-tank The Institute of War backed up Haidai’s claims, saying that Ukraine’s gains in the Kharkiv region ‘may be impacting the will or ability of the Russian military command to use newly formed volunteer units in Ukraine in a timely fashion’.

Meanwhile, US intelligence officials told the Washington Post that more ‘humiliating’ Russian retreats are likely. 

Ukraine's counterattack against Russia left people stunned earlier this month, with the country pushing invaders back with impressive speed and effectiveness.

On Tuesday (13 September), Ukraine started raising flags in areas that had been occupied by Russia for months on end, consolidating its regained control of the Kharkiv region.

Kyiv’s state border service also said the city of Vovchansk had been liberated and that Russian soldiers had left the area - which is about 3km from the Russian border - following Ukraine’s successful counter-offensive.

Russians have been pushed out of more than 6,000 sq km of territory in recent days, according to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, although an anonymous Western official stressed it’s ‘too early’ to say if Ukraine's success is indicative of a total turning point.  

Ukraine has been consolidating its control of the Kharkiv region.
Ievgen Skrypko / Alamy Stock Photo

Speaking to the New York Times, Colin Kahl, the Pentagon’s policy chief, said the US had aided Ukraine’s strategies in the run-up to the country’s counter-offensive.

Kahl confirmed: “We did do some modelling and some tabletop exercises.

“That set of exercises suggested that certain avenues for a counteroffensive were likely to be more successful than others. We provided that advice, and then the Ukrainians internalised that and made their own decision.”

Russia appears to be rattled by Ukraine’s advances, with Sergei Aksyonov, Crimea’s Moscow-appointed leader, warning locals in a video address on Monday (12 September) that they will be prosecuted if they’re caught listening to Ukrainian music or chanting Ukrainian slogans, according to Bukvy.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected] 

Featured Image Credit: @korsaserik/Twitter

Topics: Russia, Ukraine