Some 8,000 Russian troops are now in the Donetsk Oblast, reports journalist Yuriy Butusov on his Facebook, September 1, as cited by Espreso.TV.
According to Butusov, the Russian forces fighting against Ukrainian military forces near Ilovaisk in the “B” sector include units of the 106th Airborne (Ryazan) and the 98th Airborne (Ivano, Kostroma) divisions, the 9th Infantry (Nizhny Novgorod), and the 18th Infantry (Chechnya) brigades.
“A number of our captives have been moved to the Russian Federation,” he says.
Butosov reports that the Russian troops are reinforced by special services units of Russia’s GRU (Main Intelligence Directorate — Russia’s intelligence agency — Ed.) and artillery units of the North Caucasus Military District.
The Russian groups are taking up positions in the region of Donetsk, Starobeshevo, Kuteinyk, Noviy Svit.
“The total number of groups in the area stands at no fewer than 6 battalion task forces plus reinforcement units — at least 7,000-8,000 people. The Russians are reinforcing their supply lines and rear units, “he says.
According to Butusov, the Russian army is setting up bases in Ukrainian population centers and preparing them for perimeter defense. Firing positions are being established in residential buildings.
“The Ukrainian troops are attempting to stabilize the front lines and stop the Russian invasion. Nobody is giving up — the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the National Guard, the MIA battalions, are all continuing to defend Ukraine” he says.
As previously reported, Defense Minister Valeriy Heletyi confirmed the presence of Russian troops in Donetsk and at the Luhansk airport.
According to Andriy Biletskyi, commander of the Azov battalion, Russian troops are planning to mount an attack in the Volnovakha region.
Espreso.TV, translated by Anna Mostovych