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Ukraine's infantry has advanced to positions closer to Verbove, a village southeast of the strategic front-line city of Orikhiv, bypassing anti-tank ditches and obstacles, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said in its latest report on Sept. 5.
The ISW also reported that another Ukrainian infantry group advanced toward Russian defensive positions between Robotyne (10 kilometers south of Orikhiv) and Novoprokopivka (13 kilometers south of Orikhiv).
According to the think tank, Ukrainian forces are widening the breach they have already made into one of Russia's defensive layers, maneuvering more equipment and personnel into the tactical rear.
Ukraine is also reportedly making gains in the immediate vicinity of the not-yet-breached Russian defensive layer that runs from northwest of Verbove to the north of Solodka Balka (located 20 kilometers south of Orikhiv) with infantry assaults and heavy artillery fire on Russian positions.
The ISW suggests that Ukrainian forces intend to hold these positions, although it notes that it's too early to say whether they have breached Russian defenses in the area.
Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar reported on Sept. 4 that Ukraine’s military has made gains near Klishchiivka, some five kilometers from Bakhmut, and Novoprokopivka south of Robotyne.
Ukrainian forces have liberated three square kilometers around Bakhmut over the past week, Maliar said.
According to the official, Ukraine has regained a total of 47 square kilometers of land in this area since the start of the summer counteroffensive.