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Frontline report: Ukrainian forces push forward in Tokmak direction

The Tokmak direction has become a battleground of fierce clashes as Ukrainian forces intensify their advance towards Novoprokopivka and Verbove.
Frontline report: Ukrainian forces push forward in Tokmak direction

Today, there are a lot of updates from the Tokmak direction. As of now, the main goal of Ukrainian forces is to advance in the direction of Novoprokopivka and Verbove, and as recently confirmed both by Ukrainian and Russian sources, Ukrainians finally entered these two settlements and started the next two big battles.

However, today, several Russian sources claimed that the Ukrainian attack that the Russians had been preparing for in light of the extensive artillery strike never happened and claimed that the reason why Ukrainians did not deliver their main blow is that they incurred substantial losses.

Today, one such Russian source published a video of the destroyed Ukrainian equipment in front of Verbove, claiming that Russians established total fire control over the fields and destroyed most if not all, Ukrainian assault units. In total, the footage shows 28 destroyed armored cars, armored fighting vehicles, and other equipment.

However, if we try to find this section of the road, we can see that it is located basically at the intersection of the first and second lines of the Russian defense, which is the most heavily fortified area. So, Ukrainians obviously conducted a lot of assaults on these dense systems of trench networks, which is why we see losses of equipment along the whole section of the road. But the fighting in this area took place between the first and third weeks of August, and once Ukrainians breached and cleared this whole area, Ukrainians rapidly advanced towards Verbove and Novoprokopivka. So, this footage is relative old. It seems like Russian sources did not release this footage for one month to preserve it for the information operation later on, expecting that very soon Ukrainians would enter both villages.

Nonetheless, the information operation was not well coordinated because some of the most prominent Russian sources reported two important and contradicting facts: first of all, despite continuous assaults for the betterment of tactical position, the artillery preparation still continued, implying that the main attack is yet to come, and secondly, the elements from the Ukrainian 71st Jagger Brigade, 82nd Assault Brigade, and 46 Airmobile Brigade that Ukrainians relocated to this direction to reinforce the counteroffensive still have not been fully engaged.

Based on the recently released footage by the Ukrainian fighters, the highest intensity of fighting is happening around Novoprokopivka. And this is not surprising because Ukrainians had already overcome the main line of fortification from the north and established control over crucial tactical heights around the settlement.

Today, Ukrainian fighters from the 44 Artillery Brigade released a video showing how they destroyed a lot of Russian heavy equipment in and around Novoprokopivka.

  • The first target became a tank, which was destroyed with a 155mm shell for distant mining.
  • The second target became a Russian artillery system Msta-B, and its ammunition depot.
  • The third target became a D-20 howitzer with its ammunition depot.
  • The fourth target became another D-20 howitzer on the outskirts of the village.

The HIMARS crews also participated in counterbattery fire and targeted Russian medium-range artillery Uragan, increasing the verified Russian losses around Novoprokopivka to 5.

In the meantime, Ukrainian reconnaissance drone operators released footage showing how they identified an ammunition depot of the Russian forces in the trenches right behind Novoprokopivka. Judging by the footage, the ammunition had just arrived because Russians were hastily trying to relocate it to the shelters. Unfortunately for Russians, the coordinates were promptly communicated to the artillery, and the ammunition was destroyed.

Another recently released video shows how Ukrainians spotted a Russian assault unit that tried to conduct a counterattack and return the lost positions. The Russians were promptly hit with cluster shells, and the counterattack was immediately canceled. So, the intensity of fighting in this small area is incredibly high, even though Ukrainians have not yet conducted another wave of attacks.

The main goal of Ukrainian forces right now is to destroy Russian artillery to diminish Russian fire support when Ukrainians are ready to assault, identify and destroy ammunition depots to undermine Russian defensive capabilities, inflict losses on those who are holding defense and prevent rotation of forces, while gradually accumulating forces inside the bridgehead for the upcoming ground operation.

In our daily frontline report, we pair up with the military blogger Reporting from Ukraine to keep you informed about what is happening on the battlefield in the Russo-Ukrainian war.

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