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UK Defense Ministry: Russia aims to advance in most directions, but it lacks combat power

by The Kyiv Independent news desk February 14, 2023 10:12 AM 1 min read
A damaged building is seen in Bakhmut on Feb. 1, 2023, (YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP via Getty Images)
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Russian troops are being ordered to advance in most sectors of Ukraine's front line, but they have not amassed "sufficient offensive combat power on any one axis to achieve a decisive effect," the U.K. Defense Ministry reported on Feb. 14.

Russia's immediate goal may be to advance west to the Zherebets River in the eastern region of Donbas as it aims to recapture the territories liberated by Ukraine in September-November last year, according to the report.

Over the past three days, Russia's Wagner paramilitary group has "almost certainly" made further small gains around the northern outskirts of Bakhmut in the eastern Donetsk Oblast, including into the town of Krasna Hora, the ministry wrote.

Wagner Group's founder Evgenii Prigozhin reported the seizure of Krasna Hora on Feb. 12, which was disputed later by Ukraine.

However, Ukraine's Armed Forces continue organized defense in the area as Russia's tactical advance to the south of Bakhmut "likely made little progress," reads the report.

Russian troops are conducting offensive actions in the northern part of Donbas as well, particularly in the Kreminna-Svatove sector of Luhansk Oblast, according to the U.K. Defense Ministry.

"Although each local attack remains too small to achieve a significant breakthrough," it added.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Feb. 13 that Russia had already started its new offensive in Ukraine, "sending in thousands and thousands more troops."

Official: Russia ‘threw its full strength’ into encircling Bakhmut.
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