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ISW: Zaporizhia Oblast sees spike in Russia’s military losses amid Russian military redeployment issues

An ISW report indicates a significant rise in Russian military casualties in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, suggesting potential challenges in the Russian military’s capability to strategically redeploy its forces.
ISW: Zaporizhia Oblast sees spike in Russia’s military losses amid Russian military redeployment issues

Russian losses have reportedly significantly increased in western Zaporizhzhia Oblast in recent days, and the Russian military likely struggles with a lack of available combat-effective units that the Russian command is willing to laterally redeploy to this sector of the front, according to the US-based think tank Institute for the Study of War

Ukrainian Tavriisk Group of Forces Spokesperson Colonel Oleksandr Shtupun stated that Russian forces lost 313 personnel (likely a total of killed and wounded) in the Tavriisk direction on September 18, including western Zaporizhzhia Oblast. Shtupun stated that this is significantly higher than Russian losses during the previous two days when Russian forces lost roughly 200 personnel each day.

Shtupun stated that Russian Airborne (VDV) forces are conducting defensive operations in the Tavriisk direction (likely in western Zaporizhzhia Oblast) and that “Storm-Z” detachments with convict recruits have arrived to act as “cover” for VDV units, possibly referring to the need to cover the VDV units during a potential withdrawal.

ISW has previously observed elements of the 7th Guards Mountain VDV Division and 76th Guards VDV Division conducting counterattacks against Ukrainian forces in the Robotyne (10km south of Orikhiv) area, and ISW has previously assessed that these operations have likely degraded these VDV forces heavily.

“Storm-Z” detachments are often combat ineffective and will likely provide the Russian defense in western Zaporizhzhia Oblast with marginal combat power.

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