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ISW: Russian forces have seized 505 square kilometers since October offensive

by Olena Goncharova March 29, 2024 7:25 AM 1 min read
A bombed residential area is seen amid artillery shelling on Dec. 31, 2023, in Avdiivka, Donetsk Oblast. (Pierre Crom/Getty Images)
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Since Russia's most recent offensive operation began in October 2023, its forces have captured an area totaling 505 square kilometers, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a Washington-based think tank, said in its latest assessment on March 28.  

The ISW said from Jan. 1 to March 28, Russian forces expanded their territorial control by nearly an additional 100 square kilometers. "This marginal increase in the rate of Russian advance is not reflective of the threat of Russian operational success amid continued delays in US security assistance," according to the think-tank.

Material constraints hinder Ukrainian forces' ability to effectively carry out defensive operations, while simultaneously granting Russian forces the flexibility to pursue various strategies in their offensive maneuvers. This scenario, according to the ISW, presents potential for Russian forces to achieve significant operational gains in the future.

As material shortages endure and Ukraine wrestles with addressing manpower issues, the scope for exploiting Ukrainian vulnerabilities is expected to broaden.

"The arrival of sufficient and regular Western security assistance and the resolution of Ukrainian manpower challenges would narrow these opportunities for Russian forces," the ISW concludes.

Ukrainian soldiers recall retreat from Avdiivka – on foot, leaving their wounded behind
Editor’s Note: The Kyiv Independent does not disclose the soldiers’ full names since they were not authorized to speak with the press. DONETSK OBLAST – As Russian forces closed in on a Ukrainian pocket southeast of Avdiivka, infantryman Oleh heard the order clearly: “There will be no evacuation. Le…

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