Ukrainian officials say that Russia is concentrating more than 180,000 troops on two key fronts in the east, Lyman-Kupyansk and Bakhmut.
“Over 180,000 Russian Troops Massed in Eastern Ukraine, with 120,000 Concentrated on Lyman-Kupyansk Front,” Reports Ukrainian Military Commander
Ukrainian military commander Serhii Cherevaty revealed that more than 180,000 Russian troops have been deployed in the area under the Eastern Military Command’s charge. The bulk of this force, approximately 120,000 soldiers, is heavily concentrated on the Lyman-Kupyansk front, forming a formidable and sizable group.
Cherevaty provided further details about the composition of the Russian forces on the Lyman-Kupyansk axis, consisting of airborne and motorized infantry units, as well as reserve troops and assault companies comprised of prisoners. Additionally, approximately 50,000 Russian troops were also reported to be stationed on the Bakhmut front.
This deployment of Russian forces in such significant numbers has raised concerns over the escalating tensions in the region and the potential implications for the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Ukraine’s Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar said heavy fighting continued in the area near the city of Bakhmut. “The situation changes rapidly. Some locations can change hands up to twice a day,” she said.
Ukraine’s Army Chief, Oleksandr Syrsky, sounded the alarm, revealing Russia’s cunning tactics in the ongoing conflict. According to Syrsky, Russian forces are intentionally positioning themselves in areas that are vulnerable to enemy counterattacks. Moreover, they continue to hold onto territories previously captured by the Wagner group.
The objective behind these strategic moves, as explained by Syrsky, is to destabilize the situation, disrupt logistics lines, and inflict significant damage upon the Ukrainian troops. Of particular concern is the city of Chasov Yar, which remains at risk of enemy attack.
Despite the claims made by Ukrainian officials, the Russian Defense Ministry has yet to offer any commentary on the matter.
Notably, Kupyansk and Lyman are crucial railway hubs in northeastern Ukraine’s Kharkiv Oblast and Donetsk Oblast, respectively. In September 2022, Russian forces withdrew from these cities following a swift counterattack by the Ukrainian army. However, residents in these areas fear that Moscow may attempt to reclaim control during further offensive actions.
The situation remains tense and unpredictable, with both sides closely monitoring developments on the ground.
Maliar’s deputy minister said late last month that Russia was consolidating forces along the front lines to deal with Ukraine’s counter-offensive campaign, and at the same time increasing counter-attacks against Ukraine’s lines on the eastern and southern fronts.
Ukrainian Forces Infuse NATO-Trained Brigades and Western Weapons into Counter-Offensive
Since early June, Ukraine has launched a counter-offensive campaign bolstered by NATO-trained brigades and equipped with cutting-edge Western weapons. The mission has been deemed “partially successful” by Kiev, with daily advancements and the recapture of numerous villages announced.
Although progress has been made, the areas reclaimed are relatively small and situated in the contested region between the two sides. The journey ahead remains formidable, with Ukrainian forces expecting to encounter a challenging task in reaching Russia’s heavily fortified first line of defense. The Russian side has spent months preparing this defensive line, making it a stern test for Ukrainian soldiers.
As the conflict persists, both sides remain locked in an intense struggle for control, and the determination of Ukrainian troops will be put to the ultimate trial as they navigate towards the Russian-occupied territories.