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Russians likely prepares Kherson City defense, not fully withdraws from upper Kherson Oblast – ISW

Kherson City entrance welcome sign. Photo: 5.ua
In its Russian offense campaign assessment of October 24, the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War says that Russian forces are “likely preparing to defend Kherson City” and “are not fully withdrawing from upper Kherson Oblast” despite previous confirmed reports of some Russian elements withdrawing from upper Kherson.

Ukrainian Intelligence Chief Kyrylo Budanov stated on 24 October that Russian forces are not retreating from Kherson City but are instead preparing the city for urban combat. This report is consistent with indicators that ISW observed in late October.

Recent reporting about Russian military operations in Kherson has not always distinguished clearly enough between activities in Kherson City and those in western Kherson Oblast generally. Russian forces have begun a partial withdrawal from northwestern Kherson Oblast even while preparing to defend Kherson City. They have not launched into a full withdrawal from the city or the oblast as of this report.

“The Russian position in upper Kherson Oblast is, nevertheless, likely untenable; and Ukrainian forces will likely capture upper Kherson Oblast by the end of 2022. A Russian milblogger stated that Russia’s surrender even of Kherson City is overdue, as an attempt to hold the city will likely result in defeat,” ISW says. “This milblogger argued that if Russia’s military command decides to wage the war in Ukraine to a successful end, then the surrender of Kherson City is “nothing terrible” in the long run. The Russian military likely has not prepared the information space for a military defeat in Kherson Oblast as of October 24. A Russian milblogger wrote that his Russian military contacts in Kherson Oblast do not want to nor plan to retreat. Russian media has not discussed the possibility of a major military loss in Kherson Oblast besides promoting information operations about a Ukrainian false-flag attack against the Kakhova Hydroelectric Power Plant (HPP) Dam.”

Read also:

Ukrainian troops destroyed three Russian strike helicopters in Kherson Oblast – Air Force Command

Ukraine’s Army continues to move frontline southwards in Kherson Oblast – Operational Command South’s spox

Russian troops withdraw from two villages in Kherson Oblast – Ukraine’s GenStaff

Russian occupation administration claims it leaves Kherson city, says all Khersoners “must immediately leave” too (updated)

 

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