Центр оборонних стратегій

Russia’s war on Ukraine. 04.02.2024

In the operational zone of the Ukrainian Operational-Strategic Group of Forces (OSG) “Khortytsia” on the Kupyansk direction, Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 5 enemy attacks near Synkivka and Ivanivka. On the Lyman direction, they repelled 8 attacks in the areas of Serebryansk forestry, Bilohorivka, Terny and Yampolivka. On the Bakhmut direction, Ukrainian defenders repelled 3 enemy attacks near Bohdanivka and Klishchiivka. 

In the OSG “Tavriya” operational zone on the Avdiivka direction,  Ukrainian defenders continue to hold back the enemy, who persists in attempting to encircle Avdiivka. Over the past day, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 30 enemy attacks near Novokalynove, Avdiivka and Pervomaiske. On the Maryinka direction, the Defense Forces continued to hold back the enemy near Krasnohorivka, Heorhiivka and Novomykhailivka, repelling 7 attacks. On the Shakhtarsk direction, Ukrainian defenders repelled 3 enemy attacks south of Zolota Nyva. On the Zaporizhzhia direction, they repelled an enemy attack near Robotyne. 

In the operational zone of the “Odesa” OSG on the Kherson direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces continue to hold positions and repel assaults by occupation forces. Despite significant losses, the adversary persists in attempts to dislodge Ukrainian units from their positions. Over the past day, the enemy made 5 unsuccessful assault attempts. 

General conclusion:

  • Due to adverse weather conditions and other unspecified circumstances, Russian forces have nearly halved the daily intensity of artillery fire on the Kupyansk and Lyman directions.
  • The Russian military command is deploying reserves to the Bakhmut direction to break through the Ukrainian defense lines west of Bakhmut towards Chasiv Yar.
  • Recent enemy actions in the Krynky area indicate a gradually increasing level of combat control and coordination among Russian forces operating in Kherson Oblast. Attempts to narrow the foothold of the “Odesa” OSG on the left bank should be interpreted as reconnaissance by combat.
  • The main bulk of reserves of the Russian invasion grouping is concentrated in the operational zone of its “South (Yug)” operational grouping, which is conducting large-scale offensive operations in the areas of Avdiivka and Bakhmut and the “West (Zapad)” operational grouping, which is carrying out an offensive operation on the Kupyansk and partially on the Lyman directions. The “Center” operational grouping, which has resumed the offensive in the Lyman direction, has relatively few reserves, explained by the relatively small size of its operational zone along the front. It also signifies the secondary importance of this sector. The “Dnieper” operational grouping has significant reserves, as its command perceives a threat in its operational zone from the “Odesa” OSG.

Change in the line of contact (LoC):  

  • 66 combat engagements took place in various sectors.
  • On the Kupyansk direction, positional battles continued near Synkivka, Lyman Lake, Ivanivka, Krokhmalne, Tabaivka, and Novoselivske. Russian troops intensified air strikes in the Kupyansk sector, using more than 10 FAB-1500 glide bombs near Ivanivka and Kyslivka. 
  • On the Lyman direction, positional battles continued near Terny, Nevske, Yampolivka, and Serebryansk forestry.
  • On the Bakhmut direction, the “Khortytsia” OSG forces regained control over a section east of Klishchiivka, displacing the 85th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 2nd Army Corps from the area. Enemy attempts to circumvent Klishchiivka, controlled by the Ukrainian Defense Forces, from the west have been unsuccessful for an extended period. Positional battles persisted near Klishchiivka and in the Ivanivske sector, where the enemy is trying to regain lost ground and advanced by 50 meters over the day. On the western flank of Bohdanivka, the enemy managed to fully restore lost positions; however, direct assaults on the village were unsuccessful. Near Vesele, counter-engagements are ongoing, with neither side having a clear advantage. Near Spirne, the enemy actively employs the tactic of “human wave (“meat”)assaults.”
  • On the Avdiivka direction, Russian forces advanced 1.5 km along the sand quarry on the northern outskirts of Avdiivka and 1 km near Opytne. They also progressed to the east of the “Tsarska Okhota” restaurant and up to 600 m near Stepove. Positional battles took place near Stepove, in horticulture north of Avdiivka, near Pervomaiske, Nevelske, and on the southeast outskirts of Avdiivka.
  • On the Shakhtarsk direction, positional battles occurred in the areas of Krasnohorivka, Heorhiivka, and Novomykhailivka.
  • Berdyansk direction: “Tavria” OSG forces repelled Russian attacks south of Zolota Nyva.
  • Tokmak direction: Positional battles persisted near Robotyne, Verbove, and Luhivske. “Tavria” OSG forces extensively used FPV drones along the Ocheretuvate–Polohy road, hindering the enemy’s movement on this route.
  • Kherson direction: In the past few days, the forward units of the enemy’s 337th Air Assault Regiment of the 104th Air Assault Division have made at least 3 deliberate attempts to narrow the “Odesa” OSG foothold in the Krynky area. The attacks involved units from the 144th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade and the 17th Tank Regiment of the 70th Motorized Rifle Division of the 18th Combined Arms Army.
  • During these offensive and assault actions, the enemy sought to operate comprehensively. During attacks on the left bank, they fired at targets on the right bank and conducted active radio-technical and aerial reconnaissance, focusing on detecting command groups of “Odesa” OSG strike UAVs and artillery firing positions.
  • In the Black Sea-Azov naval operational area, the enemy naval group on combat duty consisted of:
    • Black Sea: 1 ship;
    • Azov Sea: 1 ship;
    • Mediterranean Sea: 2 ships, including 1 cruise missile carrier. The total “Kalibr” missile salvo is 8 cruise missiles.

Change in enemy disposition:  

  • The joint grouping of the Russian Armed Forces in the south-western theater of military operations, excluding reserves,  comprises six military groupings (ranged by numerical strength): “South (Yug),” “West (Zapad),” “Dnieper (Dnepr),” “Zaporizhzhia (Zaporozhye),” “East (Vostok),” and “Center.” It totals 469,800 military personnel, 2,797 tanks, 7,218 armored vehicles, 4,843 artillery pieces, 1,142 multiple rocket launchers, and 48 launchers for ballistic missiles. There are 17 regiments and 18 separate battalions (detachments) in reserve. The reserves are primarily concentrated in the operational zones of the groupings and number up to 62,000 military personnel, relatively under-equipped with weaponry and military equipment. The enemy’s operational and strategic reserves are mainly in the process of formation and deployment, delayed due to a significant lack of resources, limited capabilities of the Russian defense industry complex, and depletion of stockpiles at storage facilities.
  • In the vicinity of Avdiivka, combat operations involve the 1st and 114th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigades, the 80th Separate Reconnaissance Battalion “Sparta” of the 1st Army Corps, the 15th and 21st Separate Motorized Rifle Brigades of the 2nd Army, the 74th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 41st Army, the 155th Separate Marine Brigade of the Russian Pacific Fleet, and two special-purpose brigades.
  • The adversary has made slight progress from Pryiutne to Novodarivka. Near Novodonetske, the 14th Separate SOF Brigade is in action.
  • On the Zaporizhzhia direction, the 136th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade and the 71st Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 42nd Motorized Rifle Division of the 58th Army are deployed.

Possible operation situation developments: 

  • The command of the enemy’s “Dnieper” operational grouping in the Krynky area will attempt to completely prevent any advance of the “Odesa” OSG forces towards Kozachi Lagery, Oleshky Pisky, and especially toward the T2206 road. The enemy will seek to create favorable conditions for delivering a decisive strike to completely eliminate this foothold.
  • The Russian Federation plans to seize the entire Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts and part of Kharkiv Oblast up to the Oskil River by March 2024. Over the next 36 months, Russia intends to capture parts of Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk, and Kharkiv Oblasts.
  • In the event of losing Berestove and Pishchane, the enemy command will have the option to advance towards Kupyansk-Vuzlovy railway junction from the south or towards Kruglyakivka, where the Oskil River is relatively narrow. There is also a possibility of simultaneous advancement along both directions.
  • The 272nd Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 47th Tank Division will continue active operations towards Pishchane south of Tabaivka. An alternative scenario could involve units of the 27th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade or the 153rd Tank Regiment attempting to flank and attack the rear of the “Khortytsia” OSG units defending along the Kyslivka – Kotlyarivka line, operating along the P-07 road. The 1432nd or 1431st Motorized Rifle Regiments of the Russian Territorial Troops could also be involved.
  • After failing to encircle Avdiivka, Russian forces are preparing to break through the city. This indicates that the enemy command is gradually returning to a strategy reminiscent of the Bakhmut operation.
  • The enemy is completing the formation of favorable conditions for capturing the Khimik neighborhood in Avdiivka. Its loss would render further defense of the city impractical.
  • The concentration and deployment of additional enemy units and formations northwest of Volnovakha (e.g. the 57th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade from near Bakhmut) will mark the beginning of a change in the direction of the advance for the 150th Motorized Rifle Division, which will deploy its front to the south.

Russian operational losses from 24.02.22 to 04.02.24  

Personnel – almost 388,750 people (+810); 

Tanks – 6,343 (+2); 

Armored combat vehicles – 11,818 (+13); 

Artillery systems – 9,331 (+31);

Multiple rocket launchers (MLRS) – 979 (0);

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 663 (0);

Vehicles and fuel tanks – 12,393 (+41);

Aircraft – 332 (0);

Helicopters – 324 (0);

UAV operational and tactical level – 7,173 (+12);

Intercepted cruise missiles – 1,848 (+1);

Boats/ships – 25 (0).


  • According to information provided by the Situation Center of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Russian troops shelled 9 regions of Ukraine over the past day. A total of 110 towns and villages and 121 infrastructure objects were attacked with various types of weapons. One person is reported wounded in Kharkiv Oblast and one in Donetsk Oblast. The number of casualties is being updated/clarified.
  • The assault on the power infrastructure in Kryvyi Rih, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, this Saturday marked one of the most significant attacks in the past year. Ukrenergo experts reported it as the third assault within the week.
  • An additional 35 individuals, including three children, were successfully evacuated from the liberated territories of Kherson Oblast.
  • From January 26 to February 2, 2024, a total of 5,042 hectares of terrain, 2,265.1 hectares of agricultural land, 54.99 kilometers of roads, and 0.22 kilometers of power lines were surveyed and cleared of mines. 2,576 explosive items were discovered and safely neutralized. The demining operations involve 234 demining groups from the Ministry of Defense working with specialized equipment.
  • Ivan Fedorov, the Mayor of Melitopol in Zaporizhzhya Oblast, which is currently occupied by the Russian Army, was appointed Head of Zaporizhzhya Oblast Military Administration.

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