May 29, 2022 - World

Zelensky visits Kharkiv amid fighting in eastern Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visits Kharkiv on May 29. Photo: Presidential Office of Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the northeastern city of Kharkiv on Sunday, as Russian forces continued their bombardment of eastern Ukraine.

Why it matters: It was Zelensky's first official appearance outside of the Kyiv region since the war began in February.

Driving the news: Zelensky visited with troops on the frontlines and inspected the destruction of buildings during his visit, according to press releases from his office.

  • "I want to thank each of you for your service," Zelensky said to service members, according to a press release. "You risk your life for all of us and our state. Thank you for defending Ukraine's independence."

The big picture: Thirty-one percent of the Kharkiv region is occupied by Russians, while 5% has been taken back by Ukraine after having previously been occupied, per a release.

  • At least seven civilians were killed after Russian forces bombed Kharkiv on Thursday, Reuters reported. The nation's second-largest city had previously been relatively quiet after Ukrainian forces regained ground, per Reuters.
Go deeper