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ISW: Russia keeps on reinforcing resources to Avdiivka despite heavy losses

Russian forces face difficulties advancing on Avdiivka’s static frontline crowded with troops, fortifications and mines
Credit: ISW
ISW: Russia keeps on reinforcing resources to Avdiivka despite heavy losses

Despite facing significant losses in recently failed offensives, Russia keeps on directing additional troops and equipment to the Avdiivka direction, according to several sources, ISW reported in its daily report.

Ukrainian military observer Kostyantyn Mashovets said that several regiments of newly mobilized Russian soldiers have been transferred to the Avdiivka area recently. “This indicates that Russia likely does not plan to abandon operations in this direction,” Mashovets added.

A Kremlin-affiliated military blogger discussed the difficulties Russian forces face in breaking through Ukrainian defences near Avdiivka. “It is difficult to conduct maneuver warfare on a static front line with a large number of personnel and fortified areas on both sides,” the blogger wrote on Saturday.

Ukrainian drones and precision weapons have made armoured vehicles very vulnerable, according to the blogger. Russian forces are also struggling to overcome Ukrainian minefields and destroy logistics lines around Avdiivka.

“These challenges are highly similar to those faced by Ukrainian forces in southern Ukraine during the ongoing Ukrainian counteroffensive in June 2023. However, it remains to be seen if Russian forces have the capabilities and flexibility to adapt in some manner, as Ukrainian forces did following early setbacks in June 2023,” ISW concluded

The Institute for the Study of War also reported, citing a Russian milblogger, that Ukrainian forces “unexpectedly” counterattacked in the direction of Pisky (8km southwest of Donetsk City) and pushed Russian forces from positions in the area. However, another Russian source allegedly serving in the Avdiivka direction claimed that Ukrainian forces did not conduct counterattacks in his unspecified sector of the front.

Geolocated footage published on 21 October indicates that Russian forces recently made marginal advances southeast of Pervomaiske (11km southwest of Avdiivka). A Russian milblogger claimed that “Russian forces have not completely cleared the Avdiivka waste heap area and that the area is currently a contested “grey zone.”

Other takeaways from the ISW’s report:

  • Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations near Bakhmut and in western Zaporizhzhia Oblast on October 22.
  • Russian forces conducted a series of missile and drone strikes against Ukraine on October 22.
  • The nationalist pro-war Russian information space is reckoning with the possibility of a major demographic decline by weaponizing anti-migrant rhetoric.
  • Russian authorities are intensifying mobilization efforts targeting Central Asian migrant communities.

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