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ISW: Avdiivka losses create long-term crisis for Russian military

The scale of Russian equipment destruction around Avdiivka appears greater than at Vuhledar last winter and spring. Those losses prevented sustained Russian offensives elsewhere.
Destroyed city of Avdiivka. Credit: Konstiantyn Liberov via Instagram
ISW: Avdiivka losses create long-term crisis for Russian military

Recent heavy losses of Russian equipment and personnel around the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka are likely to restrict Russia’s ability to wage effective offensive operations in the long run, ISW reported

According to Ukrainian Colonel Oleksandr Shtupun, Russian forces have suffered approximately 5,000 casualties and lost 400 armoured vehicles in fighting near Avdiivka and Marinka since October 10. Satellite imagery confirms the destruction of at least 109 Russian military vehicles, mostly armoured fighting vehicles and tanks.

A Ukrainian reserve officer stated that the number of Russian armoured vehicles near Avdiivka appears to be declining, although the Russians may be regrouping for more assaults. The Russian command has sent reinforcements to offset losses and sustain offensives.

However, replacing destroyed equipment could prove difficult. Similar losses around Vuhledar last winter and spring reduced Russia’s mechanized manoeuvre capabilities and prevented sustained offensives elsewhere. The equipment destruction around Avdiivka seems greater in scale than at Vuhledar. It is uncertain if further losses will deter Russian commanders from new assaults near Avdiivka.

Russia has begun mobilizing industry to address equipment shortages, but not at a level sufficient to offset cumulative losses in Ukraine. The latest debacle around Avdiivka will likely worsen Russian equipment deficits and reverse any progress in restoring degraded mechanized capabilities, ISW analysts concluded.

Recently, Ukrainian intel reported that Russia is ramping up production capacities at military factories across the country. British intel also reported that North Korea has sent Russia weapons and military equipment. These depots play a crucial role in supporting Russian military operations in Ukraine, placing North Korea in a position to become one of Russia’s most significant foreign arms suppliers.

In addition, Russian defence industrial base (DIB) companies continue to use Western components supplied through intermediaries to manufacture missiles to use against Ukraine. In particular, Italian technological giant Camozzi Group appears to be maintaining business operations in Russia and supply chain hints at military collaborations.

Other takeaways from the ISW report:

  • Ukrainian officials denied reports that Ukraine suspended a corridor for civilian vessels in the Black Sea on October 26.
  • A senior Hamas delegation traveled to Moscow and met with Russian and Iranian officials on October 26.
  • The EU is reportedly behind on its artillery ammunition round provision to Ukraine.

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