Russia says it has repulsed a major Ukrainian offensive in southern Donetsk
Russian authorities said on Monday that they had repulsed a “large-scale offensive” by Ukrainian forces in the Donetsk region, partially occupied by Russian troops and one of four provinces formally annexed by Moscow last September. Kyiv has not reported on the alleged attack, in which Moscow claims some 250 Ukrainian soldiers were killed.
“The enemy has launched a full-scale offensive on five sectors of the front” south of Donetsk, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Telegram, adding that the assault was carried out by six mechanized battalions and two tank battalions in an area where I suspected Russia could be one of the points where the Ukrainian offensive could arrive. “The enemy’s objective was to break through our defense lines in, in his opinion, the most vulnerable part of the front”, reads the message, published this morning. But “it did not achieve its goal, it was unsuccessful,” added the department headed by Sergei Shoigu. In the message they attach a video, presumably from the attack, in which Ukrainian armored vehicles face heavy artillery.
Ukraine’s Defense Ministry did not confirm that the attack took place. In its daily war report, the Ukrainian General Staff only states that there was fighting in the Donetsk and Lugansk oblasts. Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikoz posted a message on Twitter including part of the song’s lyrics. Enjoy the silence from Depeche Mode: “Words are very useless / they can only hurt,” says the text, which is accompanied by a video of several Ukrainian soldiers putting their index fingers to their mouths to command silence. However, his message was published several hours before the Russian statement.
Kiev has for months said it is preparing a full-scale counter-offensive against Moscow’s forces to regain territory it lost since Russia launched its military operation in February 2022. Much of Donetsk has been controlled by pro-Russian separatists since 2014 It is one of four Ukrainian territories that Russia annexed last September, along with Lugansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson.
Across the border, Russian authorities said they had repelled an incursion by Ukrainian fighters into the town of Novaya Tavolzhanka on Sunday. The governor of the Russian region of Belgorod, Viacheslav Gladkov, reported on Telegram of the fighting in the area, the scene of Ukrainian bombing in recent days. (AFP)