Recently, Russian artillery fire in Ukraine has gone down “dramatically from its wartime high,” in some places by 75%, CNN reported, citing unnamed U.S. and Ukrainian officials.
According to the report, officials don’t yet have a unanimous opinion or clear explanation on why the change happened. Low artillery rounds supply or change in tactics amid successful Ukrainian counteroffensives were listed among the possible reasons.
“Either way, the striking decline in artillery fire is further evidence of Russia’s increasingly weak position on the battlefield nearly a year into its invasion,” officials told CNN.
The intensity reduction in Russian artillery shelling comes amid increased Western support of Ukraine.
On Jan. 6, the U.S. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre announced “the largest yet” new military assistance package for Ukraine, worth over $3 billion and including long-awaited Bradley infantry fighting vehicles.
Ukraine will receive 50 Bradleys equipped with 500 TOW anti-tank missiles and 250,000 rounds of 25mm ammunition. The package also includes 100 M113 armored personnel carriers, which Ukraine already operates, 55 mine-resistant vehicles, 138 HMMWV vehicles, 18 M109 155mm self-propelled howitzers, and 36 105mm towed howitzers.
At the same time, the European Union countries also vowed to scale up their contributions to Ukraine in a bid to help Ukraine achieve a breakthrough in the war. Germany said on Jan. 6 it would provide Ukraine with 40 Marder infantry fighting vehicles.