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ISW: Munitions shortage likely to hinder Russian offensives this year

by The Kyiv Independent news desk January 12, 2023 7:02 AM 1 min read
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Russia's inability to address munitions shortages will likely frustrate Russian forces' ability to sustain offensive operations in eastern Ukraine in 2023, the Institute for the Study of War said in its latest update.

Russian artillery fire in Ukraine decreased “dramatically from its wartime high,” in some places by 75%, CNN reported on Jan. 10, citing unnamed U.S. and Ukrainian officials.

While the officials don’t have a clear explanation for why the change happened, low artillery rounds supply or change in tactics amid successful Ukrainian counteroffensives were listed among the possible reasons.

Spokesperson for the Ukrainian Eastern Group of Forces Serhiy Cherevaty said Russian forces had depleted their reserves of 122mm and 152mm artillery shells and other reserves over the summer of 2022, believing that excessive artillery fire would lead to faster results, the ISW reported.

According to Cherevaty, Russia is forced to either transfer shells from farther areas in Russia or purchase additional munitions from foreign countries, resulting in a reduced rate of artillery fire, the ISW wrote.

The ISW also noted that Russian sources are "increasingly acknowledging that Russia’s ammunition and supply shortages are decisively impeding the ability of Russian forces to advance."

If Russia does not address its fundamental problems with supplying its war effort in Ukraine, its mobilization campaigns will do little to affect the course of the war, the ISW assessed.

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