In an intercepted phone call revealed by Ukraine’s security service, the SBU, on Wendesday, a Russian troop is heard telling his fellow soldier his unit has bogged down for over a month in Kharkiv region as Ukrainian forces are frustrating its attempts to advance.

‘[We] can’t f****** go on a regular offensive. Ukrainians keep pummeling our unit, don’t let us start.’

The distraught soldier is complaining Ukrainian forces are shredding their positions with everyone being ‘panic-stricken’ and not really eager about going on with the fight.

‘Our [soldiers] are in panic [mode]. No-one wants to advance. The equipment was f***** blown up, mortars f****** blown up, nothing left. The offensive as it is. It has been this way for a week.’