Russian troops on Tuesday continued their attempts to advance into the northwest of the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, in the eastern Donetsk region, with movements in the industrial zone, where their immediate target is the Vostokmash factory.
The leader of Donetsk imposed by Russia, Denis Pushilin, assured on Tuesday that Vostokmash, located on the territory of the AZOM metallurgical company and which produced non-ferrous metals, will soon fall into the hands of the Wagner Group fighters. "There are premises that the factory will soon be under full control of the Wagner private military company," Pushilin said, though he admitted that the situation "remains difficult."
The Wagner Group itself assured in turn that it had already "taken control" of Vostokmash. He released photographs in which mercenaries allegedly pose inside the factory, in whose basements, according to the Russian Telegram channel "Military Chronicle", at least 300 Ukrainian soldiers remain.
The President of Ukraine, Volodimir Zelenki, held a meeting with his General Staff on Tuesday, in which the Commander-in-Chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Valery Zaluzhny, and other military chiefs reported on the situation on the fronts, the progress of operations and, in particular, of the defense of Bakhmut.
"After considering the progress of the defensive operation on the Bakhmut front, all members of the General Staff expressed the common position to continue the defense of the Bakhmut city," the Ukrainian Presidency said.
Ukraine has mobilized thousands of reservists to defend Bakhmut, according to the head of a Chechen commando unit and deputy commander of the 2nd Corps of the people's militias of the self-proclaimed Lugansk people's republic, Aptí Alaudinov.
"According to my estimates, 7,000 to 10,000 have been sent in an attempt to hold the city. I cannot say how many Ukrainian troops have been eliminated so far, but I know that they have heavy losses every day," Alaudinov told the Rossia-TV channel. 1 of Russian state television.
At the same time, the Chechen military dismissed the possibility that the Ukrainian Army could launch a successful counteroffensive to unblock Bakhmut, a city that before the outbreak of the war had around 70,000 inhabitants and now less than, according to the latest calculations by Kiev.
"We are aware that the enemy is planning an attack to unblock Artiomovsk (the Russian name for Bakhmut). They have concentrated three groups for that purpose, but so far they have not been successful," he explained.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian military and Western experts agree that the intensity of Russian attacks in the Donetsk region has dropped compared to last week, a fact that they attribute mainly to the shortage of artillery shells suffered by Moscow troops.
"If hundreds of assault attempts and about 600 artillery attacks were registered before, today there are fewer: up to 30 assault actions and between 200 and 250 artillery attacks," said Ukrainian Colonel Olexiy Dmytrashkovskiy, spokesman for the group. Taurida, in statements to national television.
Russian troops have been rationed the use of ammunition, a measure that affects not only the mercenaries of the Wagner Group, who complain on social networks about the shortage of ammunition, but all units of the Russian Army, according to the military.
"The enemy, I think, is worn out and no longer has the firepower of before," said Dmitrashkovki, who stressed that, in addition to the lack of supplies, Russian troops suffer enormous casualties, especially in the battle of Bakhmut.
British intelligence said today in its daily report on the war in Ukraine that in recent weeks "Russia's artillery ammunition shortage has probably worsened as there is extremely harsh rationing in many sectors of the front".
"This has almost certainly been the key reason why no Russian formation has recently been able to generate an operationally significant offensive action," the British report added.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Thursday indirectly confirmed the decrease in his troops' firepower by ordering a doubling of production of high-precision missiles during a visit to a rocket factory on the outskirts of Moscow.
According to the criteria of The Trust ProjectDate Of Update: 15 March 2023, 00:27