STORY: Thousands of Russian troops fled Izium during the weekend, leaving behind large amounts of ammunition and equipment, in their worst defeat since they were driven back from the outskirts of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv in March.
Commenting on the devastation he had seen in Izium, Zelenskiy said: "It’s not a shock for me... because we saw the same scenes as in Bucha... The same destroyed buildings and people killed."
Bucha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, was occupied for a short period of time by invading Russian forces. Ukraine and its Western allies have accused the Russian forces of perpetrating war crimes there, something Moscow denies.
Izium, which had a prewar population of about 50,000, is located on an important highway that runs from Kharkiv, Ukraine's second biggest city, to the eastern city of Sloviansk, that Russian forces have been trying to advance towards.