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Russia’s war on Ukraine. 22.08.2023

Operational situation

Ukrainian Defense Forces continue their offensive operation on the Melitopol and Berdyansk directions, consolidating their positions on the achieved frontlines and engaging in counter-battery warfare. The enemy concentrates their main efforts on the Kupyansk, Lyman, Bakhmut, and Avdiivka directions.

General conclusion: 

  • Ukrainian Defense Forces continued offensive operations on at least three sections of the front, advancing on the Avdiivka-Donetsk line and in the west of Zaporizhzhia Oblast;
  • Along the Robotyne – Verbove line, the enemy is shifting towards mobile defense tactics.
  • The enemy continues to face challenges with material and technical support. The security measures implemented in Crimea are already hindering the logistics of the Russian Armed Forces in the south of Ukraine.
  • Many trains carrying fuel and lubricants, intended for Russian military equipment, are being held at the “Simferopol-Gruzovoy” station. Their departure should not be expected shortly.
  • Russian forces have intensified security measures near the Kerch Strait Bridge and established a buffer zone for inspecting ships.
  • The 20th and the 2nd Armies, operating in the east of Ukraine, lack sufficient light transport equipment, which hampers their effective operations. This situation is lowering the morale of their personnel.
  • Russian forces have begun receiving outdated towed howitzers D-20.
  • The formation and deployment of the new 18th and 25th Armies in the south of Ukraine aim to create the opportunity to move regular formations, such as the 49th Army, from Kherson Oblast to more critical sections of the front.

Change in the line of contact (LoC):  

  • There have been more than 30 combat engagements on various fronts. 
  • On the Kupyansk direction, Ukrainian Defense Forces control Synkivka. They are fiercely defending this area but do not intend to hold the areas on the eastern bank of the Oskil River. Units of the Defense Forces have achieved tactical successes near Novoselivske and in the area of the Serebryansk Forest near Dibrova.
  • The enemy captured several heights near Synkivka and Petropavlivka and unsuccessfully attacked positions of the 67th Separate Mechanized Brigade near Kreminna, losing around ten tanks and BMPs. They also attempted to capture positions of the 81st Separate Airborne Assault Brigade in the Bilohorivka and the Serebryansk Forest areas, where defense is held by the 92nd Separate Mechanized Brigade and the National Guard “Azov” brigade.
  • On the Bakhmut direction, Russian forces counterattacked northwest of Klishchiivka, where they lost 6 tanks and 15 BMPs in battle. They unsuccessfully attacked near Berkhivka and Kurdyumivka, and are attempting to regain lost positions in the areas of Zaliznyanske, Vasylivka, and Bohdanivka. The enemy maintains their positions along the Klishchiivka – Andriivka – Kurdyumivka line. The core of the enemy grouping in this direction consists of airborne units, reinforced by BARS detachments and various kinds of “volunteer” formations. 
  • Ukrainian Defense Forces hold dominant heights on the northern flank of Bakhmut.
  • On the Avdiivka direction, Russian forces unsuccessfully attempted to advance towards Avdiivka, near Maryinka and Novomykhailivka. They tried a reconnaissance attack towards Kruta Balka but did not make progress. 
  • Ukrainian Defense forces engaged in battles near Krasnohorivka and Nevelske.
  • Zaporizhzhia Direction: 
    • Tokmak Direction (Robotyne): Forces of the “Tavriya” Operational Grouping have penetrated the center of Robotyne. They are engaged in heavy battles against units of the 810th Separate Marine Brigade of the Black Sea Fleet and the 503rd Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 19th Motorized Rifle Division of the 58th Army. The Ukrainian forces have overcome Russian fortifications and advanced 3 kilometers east of Robotyne. They have conducted successful combat operations to the southeast of Robotyne and south of Mala Tokmachka and intensified attacks along the Robotyne-Verbove line, where the enemy has abandoned several positions. The 65th Separate Mechanized Brigade has breached the enemy’s defenses west of Robotyne and is advancing in the southern direction. Between Novopokrovka and Verbove, the “Tavriya” forces have defeated the 3rd and 14th “BARS” detachments and seized Height 166. Massed artillery shelling continues on the positions of the enemy’s 56th and 108th Air Assault Regiments of the 7th Air Assault Division and the 6th Motorized Rifle Regiment to the south of Robotyne.
    • Russian forces have unsuccessfully attempted to reclaim the lost positions east of Robotyne. The 503rd Motorized Rifle Regiment was recently redeployed from Nesteryanka and took up positions in Robotyne.
    • Berdyansk direction (Velyka Novosilka): Russian artillery and aviation repelled an attack by the “Tavriya” Operational Grouping towards Urozhaine. The enemy thwarted attacks by two assault groups of the “Tavriya” Grouping to the south of Chervone. In Zavitne Bazhannia, remnants of the 60th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade and the 247th Airborne Assault Regiment of the 7th Airborne Division, which are staffed at 40-45% of their authorized strength, have transitioned to a defensive stance.
    • Units of the “Tavriya” Operational Grouping continue reconnaissance activities towards Zavitne Bazhannia and persist in attacking Russian positions east of Urozhaine.
  • Kherson Direction: Ukrainian Defense Forces continued raids on islands within the Dnipro River delta and the eastern shore of the Kherson Oblast. Russian assault groups engaged in a firefight with Ukrainian forces near Antonivskyi Bridge.
  • In the Black Sea-Azov Sea Maritime Operational area, the following enemy vessels were on active duty: in the Black Sea – 6 ships, including 2 carriers of cruise missiles; in the Azov Sea – 1, and in the Mediterranean – 8, with 2 carriers of cruise missiles. The total salvo of “Kalibr” cruise missiles amounts to 36.
  • Within the buffer zone near the Kerch Strait Bridge, approximately 30 to 40 vessels are anticipated for inspection. Alongside civilian vessels, ships from the Black Sea Fleet and the Russian Federal Security Service’s Border Guard are maneuvering.

Change in enemy disposition:

  • The 37th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 36th Army reinforced its combat formations near Novodonetske with the 131st Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 1st Army Corps.
  • The 336th Separate Marines Brigade of the Baltic Fleet reinforced the combat formations of the 143rd Motorized Rifle Regiment in the area of Novozlatopil.

Escalation indicators:

  • An increase in the number of cruise missile carrier vessels within the Black Sea waters, along with an escalation in their total salvo.

Possible operation situation developments: 

  • The enemy’s command will continue attempts of active actions on the Kupyansk direction, aiming to compel the Defense Forces command to allocate a portion of its strategic reserves precisely to this direction.
  • The enemy will exert efforts to maintain its positions on the Bakhmut direction, even at the expense of reducing the intensity of combat operations on the Avdiivka and Maryinka sectors.
  • The enemy’s command is compelled to relocate at least 2-3 Separate Motorized Rifle Brigades or one Motorized Rifle Division from other Operational Groupings, primarily the “Yug (South)” Grouping, into the operational zone of the “Vostok (East)” Grouping to establish operational reserves.

Russian operational losses from 24.02.22 to 22.08.23 

Personnel – almost 258,340 people (+410);

Tanks – 4,362 (+4);

Armored combat vehicles – 8,476 (+27);

Artillery systems – 5,295 (+31);

Multiple rocket launchers (MLRS) – 721 (+2);

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 491 (+2);

Vehicles and fuel tanks –7,722 (+30);

Aircraft – 315 (0);

Helicopters – 316 (0);

UAV operational and tactical level – 4,312 (+3);

Intercepted cruise missiles – 1,406 (0);

Boats/ships – 18 (0).


  • According to information provided by the MOD’s Situation Center, over the past day, Russian forces shelled 9 regions of Ukraine. 135 towns and villages and 81 infrastructure objects were attacked with various types of weapons. 2 civilians were killed, and 7 were injured over the past day, as reported by Oblast Military State Administrations. 
  • Since 2014, more than 1 million Ukrainians have taken part in combat, Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said.
  • As of today, the Russian side has returned twelve bodies of Ukrainian prisoners to Ukraine. These individuals had previously been verified by the International Committee of the Red Cross as being held captive in Russia. At the same time, there have been no reports from Russia regarding their health deterioration or any severe conditions, the head of the Coordination Staff for the Treatment of Prisoners of War, Yuriy Taraniuk, said. 
  • Russian aggressors from the Republic of Buryatia are actively engaged in looting and mocking the peaceful Ukrainian residents of the temporarily occupied city of Tokmak in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, according to Andriy Kovalev, the spokesperson of the Ukrainian Armed Forces General Staff. The Russian soldiers check whether the local residents have documents confirming the right to live in their own homes. In instances where the occupiers discover a lack of appropriate documentation, they seize all property and accommodations under the guise of “confiscation” and beat those citizens who express dissatisfaction and protest.
  • The first appellate court of general jurisdiction in Moscow has dismissed the appeal against the 13-year prison sentence imposed on Maksym Butkevych, a Ukrainian human rights advocate. The original sentence was delivered by a “court” in the temporarily occupied Luhansk Oblast for a crime he did not commit. The allegations have been widely discredited, as Ukrainian journalists have presented evidence showcasing Butkevych’s alibi. A prominent human rights defender, Butkevych, temporarily suspended his work in assisting refugees, journalism, humanitarian efforts, education, and human rights advocacy to serve in the Armed Forces when the full-scale war started.
  • If the independence referendum were held today, the absolute majority of Ukrainians – at least 82% – would support independence, Serhiy Shapovalov, senior analyst of the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation, said.
  • The vast majority, or 90.4% of Ukrainians, do not agree to recognize the occupied territories as part of the Russian Federation, and another 73.8% do not support Ukraine refusing to join NATO, according to the results of a survey by the Ilko Kucheriv “Democratic Initiatives” Foundation jointly with the sociological service of the Razumkov Center.

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