Ukrainian Flag Raised Over Recaptured City of Balaklia

Ukraine’s armed forces regained control of Balaklia, a city in Ukraine’s Kharkiv Oblast, on Thursday, September 8, according to the Balaklia City Council, after a counteroffensive was launched against Russian forces in the region.

Footage released on Thursday by the city council shows Ukrainian soldiers on top of the District Administration Building in the center of Balaklia with a Ukrainian flag raised behind them and a Russian flag under their feet.

In a video posted to Telegram on Thursday evening, President Volodymyr Zelensky said dozens of settlements had been liberated by Ukrainian forces. “In total, more than a thousand square kilometers of our territory have been liberated since September 1,” the president wrote.

Sasha Kots, a pro-Kremlin media figure and propagandist, shared a post on Telegram that said Ukrainian forces had partially gained control of Balaklia and were approaching the Russian-occupied city of Kupiansk. Such territorial gains posed a serious threat to occupying Russian forces in Izyum, about 25 miles southeast of Balaklia. Credit: Balaklia City Council via Storyful