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ISW: Ukraine widening breach in Russian defenses in Zaporizhzhia Oblast

Ukraine infantry broke through Russia’s anti-tank ditches and “dragon’s teeth” in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, Ukrainian forces are widening the breach made earlier in one Russian defensive layer, ISW says.
ISW: Ukraine widening breach in Russian defenses in Zaporizhzhia Oblast

The US-based Institute for the Study of War says Ukrainian light infantry has advanced to positions beyond anti-tank ditches and dragon’s teeth anti-tank obstacles that comprise the current Russian defensive layer ahead of the Ukrainian advance in western Zaporizhzhia Oblast, and Ukrainian forces likely intend to hold those positions.

ISW is not prepared to assess that Ukrainian forces have breached this Russian defensive layer in the absence of observed Ukrainian heavy equipment in these areas. Geolocated footage published on September 4 indicates that Ukrainian forces advanced to tree-line positions that are east of the Russian anti-tank ditches and dragon’s teeth obstacles that are a part of a tri-layered defense immediately west of Verbove (18km southeast of Orikhiv).

The geolocated footage published on September 4 indicates that Ukrainian light infantry has also advanced further into a series of prepared Russian defensive positions along the road that runs northwest into Verbove.

Other geolocated footage published on September 4 indicates that Ukrainian forces have advanced up to Russian defensive positions between Robotyne (10km south of Orikhiv) and Novoprokopivka (13km south of Orikhiv).

Ukrainian forces are widening the breach they have already made in one Russian defensive layer and are reportedly maneuvering more equipment and personnel into tactical rear areas of this layer.

Ukrainian forces appear to be making gains in the immediate vicinity of the not-yet-breached Russian defensive layer that runs northwest of Verbove to north of Solodka Balka (20km south of Orikhiv) with infantry assaults and heavy artillery fire on Russian positions further into and south of this layer.

The deployment of Ukrainian heavy equipment and more substantial forces to these areas than ISW has so far observed would indicate both a breach of this Russian defensive layer and an effort to widen that breach.

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