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General Staff: Russia renews attacks at Avdiivka, suffers casualties

by Martin Fornusek October 20, 2023 8:43 AM 2 min read
Ukrainian soldiers fire artillery on Russian positions on the front line in the city of Avdiivka, Donetsk Oblast, on July 27, 2023. (Diego Herrera Carcedo/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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Russian forces renewed their assault against Avdiivka in Donetsk Oblast and launched unsuccessful attacks around the town's flanks, the General Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces reported on Oct. 20.

"The enemy has resumed offensive actions and does not stop trying to surround Avdiivka," the report said, noting that Russian troops suffered heavy losses.

Russia launched unsuccessful offensives near settlements on Avdiivka's flanks, namely at Stepove and Novokalynove north of the town and around Sieverne to the west, the military reported.

"Over the past day, the enemy's losses include almost 900 soldiers killed or injured, almost 50 tanks, and over 100 destroyed or damaged armored vehicles," the General Staff said when reporting on the Avdiivka offensive, but without specifying whether these losses concern only this sector.

The General Staff said earlier that over the past day, Russian forces had suffered 1,380 casualties and lost 55 tanks and 120 armored personnel vehicles across all fronts.

Russian forces also attempted unsuccessful attacks in the Kupiansk direction and in the Lyman direction, where Ukrainian troops repelled attacks near the village of Makiivka, the military said.

Failed Russian attacks were also reported near Klishchiivka in the Bakhmut direction and in the Marinka and Shakhtarske directions.

Moscow's troops intensified their attacks at Avdiivka – a heavily fortified Ukrainian-held town a few kilometers north of Donetsk – last week in an effort to encircle the settlement. The renewed offensive was accompanied by heavy shelling of civilian areas.

Kyiv reported that Russian forces have suffered heavy casualties in both manpower and equipment during these attacks. The U.S.-based think tank Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported on Oct. 16 that Russia had "marginally advanced" near Avdiivka but noted that the pace of the assault had slowed down.

According to the U.K. Defense Ministry, the Avdiivka assault is the most significant offensive operation undertaken by Russia since at least January 2023.

Ukraine faces onslaught at Avdiivka as Russia launches new offensive
After months of a relatively static siege, Russian forces launched a heavy assault in the direction of the front-line town of Avdiivka, backed up by armor, artillery, and air strikes. The Ukrainian military has reported unusually heavy fighting over the past three days as Russia encroaches on the m…

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