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Russo-Ukrainian war, day 681: Ukrainian military intelligence forces conduct cross-border raid inside Russia

Ukrainian Main Intelligence Directorate forces conducted a cross-border raid in the Belgorod Oblast of Russia, causing losses among Russian troops. Ukrainian military reported striking Russian ammunition depots in occupied Crimea.
Russo-Ukrainian war, day 681: Ukrainian military intelligence forces conduct cross-border raid inside Russia

Military

Stratcom: Ukrainian forces struck Russian ammunition depots in occupied Crimea. On 4 January, Ukrainian forces struck Russian ammunition depots near the village of Pervomaiske in Russian-occupied Crimea.

Ukrainian military intelligence forces raid Russian positions in Belgorod Oblast. During the mission, Ukraine’s intelligence officers mined the only road used by the Russian troops in the area and attacked a Russian platoon.

ISW: Russia intensified attacks near Avdiivka, allegedly made marginal advances. Ukrainian Tavriisk Group Commander Oleksandr Tarnavskyi confirmed on 3 January that Russian forces intensified air strikes and shelling on Ukrainian positions with artillery in the Avdiivka and Mariinka sectors.

As of 05 Jan 2024, the approximate losses of weapons and military equipment of the Russian Armed Forces from the beginning of the invasion to the present day:

      • Personnel: 363070 (+790)
      • Tanks: 6011 (+9)
      • APV: 11142 (+14)
      • Artillery systems: 8604 (+30)
      • MLRS: 949 (+2)
      • Anti-aircraft systems: 631 (+1)
      • Aircraft: 329
      • Helicopters: 324
      • UAV: 6771 (+18)
      • Cruise missiles : 1786 (+1)
      • Warships/boats: 23
      • Submarines: 1
      • Vehicles and fuel tanks: 11463 (+40)

Intelligence and technology

UK intel: Little progress in Russia’s Ukrainian offensives over past week. Sustained Russian offensive operations over the past week result in marginal advances at best against steadfast Ukrainian lines in various sectors including northeastern, eastern, and southern Ukraine.

Ukraine identifies 42 foreign components in Russian Kh-59 missiles. Ukraine’s anti-graft agency adds 42 new details of Russian Kh-59 missiles to its public database of foreign components in Russian weapons.

International

FT: Russia won’t stop in Ukraine, warns Latvian FM. Latvia’s foreign minister stresses Russia will pursue new targets despite Ukraine outcome, given enduring imperialist ideology, necessitating long-term NATO containment strategy.

Zelenskyy, Erdogan discuss returning Ukrainian POWs, Black Sea security in phone call. “Türkiye’s mediation is crucial for the release of Crimean Tatars and all others – adults and children, military and civilians, held in Russian captivity,” Zelenskyy said.

Stoltenberg to convene NATO-Ukraine Council over Russian air strikes. NATO Secretary General to hold NATO-Ukraine Council meeting next week to discuss Russian missile and drone strikes on Ukraine amid recent escalation. Ukraine calls for more air defenses.

Humanitarian and social impact

Ombudsman: Putin issues order granting Russian citizenship to Ukrainian children. Ukrainian Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets warns that there is a possibility that no Ukrainian child will remain in Russia, as they could all become Russian citizens within the next three months.

US calls UN Security Council meeting over North Korea’s missile supply to Russia. “”We expect Russia will use additional missiles from the D​PRK to destroy more of Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure and kill Ukrainian civilians,”” US Ambassador said.

Reuters: Nepal suspends work permits for Russia following citizens killed fighting in Ukraine. Reportedly, at least 10 Nepali soldiers died while fighting for the Russian army in Ukraine.

New developments

Pentagon: Ukrainian F-16 training wrapping up by December 2024. In October 2023, the US agreed to head up a coalition of countries, including the Netherlands and Denmark, to train Ukrainian pilots on F-16 fighter jets, which could potentially be the main combat aircraft for Ukraine.

Pentagon dismisses reports of expiring ATACMS destruction instead of sending to Ukraine. Pentagon spokesperson dismisses as false media reports claiming the US military plans to discard expired ATACMS missiles rather than provide them to Ukraine.

Read our earlier daily review here

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