Ukraine Maps Reveal Russia Has Lost Huge Amount of Territory in Last Week

Ukrainian troops have recaptured large areas around the capital Kyiv during the last week, as Russian forces withdrew to refocus their campaign in the east of the country.

Maps by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a U.S. thinktank, show that the situation drastically changed in the country between March 28 and April 4, with territories occupied by Russian troops since the beginning of the invasion on February 24 returning to the hands of Ukrainian forces.

Map Ukraine Russia offensive
Russian troops encircling the capital have started to withdraw last week. Institute for the Study of War 3:00 p.m. ET, April 4

The Russian troops that had partially encircled Kyiv for weeks retreated last week, as the Kremlin ordered a change of strategy in its "special military operation" in Ukraine, refocusing on the "complete liberation" of Donbas in eastern Ukraine.

A senior Pentagon official said on Monday that two thirds of the Russian troops around Kyiv has been removed and mostly sent to Belarus to be later redeployed in Ukraine.

"What we continue to believe is that they're going to be refit, resupplied, perhaps maybe even reinforced with additional manpower, and then sent back into Ukraine to continue fighting elsewhere," the official told reporters.

"Our best assessment is that they will be applied in the eastern part of the country in the Donbas region."

According to the latest report by the ISW, Russian forces have almost completely withdrawn from the Chernihiv and Sumy oblasts in northern and northeastern Ukraine. The ISW estimates that Russian troops withdrawn from the areas around Kyiv "are highly unlikely to be effectively deployed elsewhere in Ukraine" and "are likely a spent force."

Much of the territories at the eastern and southern border, including the areas surrounding Melitopol and Mariupol, remain under Russian control. But thanks to the fierce resistance of Ukrainian troops and civilians, Russian forces had made little to no advances in the south of the country.

According to the ISW, Ukrainian defenders retain a hold on Mariupol, while Russian troops are suffering from low morale and face growing supply issues.

In the Kherson Oblast, in southern Ukraine, Ukrainian forces have "likely" conducted successful counter-attacks on Monday, the ISW reports.

"Little to no progress" has been made to capture Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, the territories that are the new focus of the Russian campaign in Ukraine.

But Russian troops are likely to launch a new offensive from Izyum, a city southeast of Kharkiv in eastern Ukraine, and try from there to conquer Slovyansk and join up with Russian forces in Donbas.

Map Ukraine Russians aggression
Ukrainians are regaining territories in northern Ukraine. Institute for the Study of War 3:00 p.m. ET, April 4

Izyum, a city of 40,000 people, fell to Russian forces at the beginning of the war, but shelling and fighting has continued since.

According to ISW, "if Russian forces are unable to take Slovyansk at all, Russian frontal assaults in Donbas are unlikely to independently break through Ukrainian defenses and Russia's campaign to capture the entirety of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts will likely fail."

A senior Pentagon official said on Monday that they expect Russian troops to "become more aggressive" in Donbas.

The Black Sea port city of Odesa remains a key target for Moscow's troops in southern Ukraine, although Russian troops haven't broken through Ukrainian resistance yet.