Russia is getting ready to go on the offensive again in the Moscow-controlled eastern part of Ukraine, said Colonel-General Oleksandr Syrskyi, commander of the Ukrainian military’s ground forces.
“After a month of fierce fighting and significant losses in the Kupiansk and Lyman directions, the enemy is regrouping its forces and means, simultaneously throwing newly formed brigades and divisions from the territory of the Russian Federation,” Syrskyi said Friday on his Telegram channel.
Syrskyi said Russian forces were trying to “increase the level of combat potential and resume active offensive operations.” He did not provide details but said the Russians continued heavy artillery and mortar shelling as well as air assaults.
“Under such conditions, we must promptly take all measures to strengthen our defenses on the threatened lines and advance where possible,” the general said.
The British Defense Ministry said Saturday in its daily intelligence report on Ukraine that there is a “realistic possibility” of Russia increasing the intensity of its offensive in Kupiansk and Lyman over the next two months. The ministry said Russia’s probable objective in the region will be to advance west to the Oskil River and create a buffer zone around Luhansk oblast.
Kupiansk, a town with a prewar population around 27,000, was seized by Russia in the early days of the February 2022 invasion before Ukrainian troops recaptured it in a lightning offensive in September that embarrassed Moscow.
© 2023 SOA