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Military: Russia intensifies attacks in Lyman-Kupiansk direction

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk October 5, 2023 2:01 PM 2 min read
Ukrainian soldiers adjust a national flag atop a personnel armored carrier on a road near Lyman, Donetsk Oblast, on Oct. 4, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine (Photo credit: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP).
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Russia is intensifying attacks in the Lyman-Kupiansk direction of the front line in Kharkiv and Luhansk oblasts, using both ground forces and air strikes, Illia Yevlash, the spokesperson for the Eastern Grouping of Forces, said on air on Oct. 5.

According to Yevlash, Russian troops shifted their focus on a new target – Makiivka, a Luhansk Oblast village roughly 30 kilometers north of Lyman and 60 kilometers south of Kupiansk.

Eight skirmishes have been recorded in this area over the past day, the spokesperson said. Russia is also actively using its air forces, deploying both jet planes and military helicopters, he added.

Yevlash said that Ukrainian troops repelled Russian attempts to advance, destroying 13 pieces of enemy hardware, including two T-72 tanks and five armored fighting vehicles.

According to the Ukrainian military, Russia has been concentrating over 100,000 soldiers and thousands of pieces of equipment in the Kupiansk-Lyman direction since the summer.

The U.S.-based think-tank Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said that Russia's offensive in the northeast appeared to be Russia's strategy to pin Ukrainian troops, who could have been deployed elsewhere.

On Sept. 28, the ISW wrote in its daily update that Russia appeared to have recently reduced the pace of the offensive in the Kupiansk-Svatove-Kreminna front line.

Citing fewer reported Russian ground attacks in the Kupiansk and Lyman directions, the think-tank said this indicates that Ukraine's ongoing counteroffensive on other fronts has distracted Russia's offensive in the northeast.

Soldiers fighting near Kreminna, a Russian-occupied town on the Lyman axis, told the Kyiv Independent in July that there was a brief period every now and then when Russia's offensive would slow down – before it picked up the pace again after its rotation of units.

Endless Russian assaults near Kreminna test Ukraine’s defenses
Editor’s note: The Kyiv Independent is not disclosing the full names or deployed positions of the Ukrainian soldiers interviewed in the story due to security concerns amid the ongoing war. Donetsk Oblast – The narrow, partly destroyed road through the Serebrianskyi Forest in the northern part of Do…
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