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Russia’s war on Ukraine. 20.02.2024

In the operational zone of the Ukrainian Operational-Strategic Group of Forces (OSG) “Khortytsia” on the Kupyansk direction,  the enemy made 4 unsuccessful offensive attempts near Synkivka. On the Lyman direction, the enemy attacked 6 times in the areas of Terny and Bilohorivka with the support of aviation. On the Bakhmut direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 14 enemy attacks in the areas of Bohdanivka, Ivanivske, Klishchiivka and Andriivka. 

In the OSG “Tavriya” operational zone on the Avdiivka direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 9 enemy attacks near Lastochkyne, Severne, Pervomaiske and Nevelske. On the Maryinka direction, the Defense Forces continued to hold back the enemy near Heorhiivka, Pobeda, and Novomykhailivka, repelling 21 enemy attacks. On the Novopavlivka direction, the enemy attempted to launch an offensive near Staromayorske. On the Zaporizhzhia direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 11 attacks near Malynivka and 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 Russian 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:

  • On the Kupyansk and Lyman directions, the enemy has firepower and air superiority, but resorts only to frontal attacks to dislodge the Defense Forces from their positions.
  • On the Bakhmut direction, there is an increase in the intensity of combat actions along the entire eastern flank.
  • Russian forces are trying to regain the territories that Ukraine liberated during counteroffensives in 2022 and 2023. The Ukrainian Defense Forces suffer from a shortage of ammunition.
  • The relocation of some units of the 116th Separate Brigade of Operational Purpose from Donetsk to the Belgorod Oblast may serve several potential objectives:
    • Preparation for the containment of a potential breakthrough by raid groups of the RDK (Russian Volunteer Corps) or LSR (Legion “Russian Liberty”) into the Belgorod region on the day of the upcoming Russian presidential elections;
    • The next stage of information-psychological operations to intimidate the population of border areas of Ukraine;
    • Formation of a reserve of the “Zapad (West)” Operational Group for actions on the Kharkiv direction.
  • Russian forces are attempting to tactically divide the “Tavriya” OSG forces defending along the Robotyne–Verbove line.

Change in the line of contact (LoC):  

  • There were 81 combat engagements on various fronts. 
  • Intense battles continued on the Kupyansk direction near Synkivka and Kyslivka, where the enemy attempted to advance towards Berestove–Tabaivka. The 15th Motorized Rifle Regiment and the 1st Tank Regiment of the 2nd Motorized Rifle Division of the Russian 1st Tank Army failed to build on their success in the Tabaivka-Krokhmalne area and to enter the flank and rear of  the OSG “Khortytsia” units at the Ivanivka-Kotlyarivka line. The enemy attempts to break through Pishchane also failed. As a result of the battles, the enemy was forced to take unfavorable positions and halt their advance. The enemy command is deploying at least three additional assault units to this area, each at the company level, and concentrating them east of Kotlyarivka in the vicinity of height 128.7 and northeast of Tabaivka.
  • The forward units of the 25th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 6th Army, reinforced by units of the 138th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade, persist in their attempts to break through along the Oskil River and the railway running from the north, in the general direction of Synkivka – Petropavlivka towards the left-bank part of Kupyansk and the Kupyansk – Svatove road. All their attempts to attack from the forested area south of the Lyman Pershyi are suppressed by the OSG “Khortytsia” fire. The enemy command in this area is trying to act unconventionally, constantly changing attack and assault directions.
  • On the Lyman direction, the enemy achieved tactical successes near Terny. The enemy command is focused on eliminating the Defense Forces’ foothold on the Chornyi Zherebets River, attempting to squeeze it with active offensive actions from the south towards Yampolivka and Terny. The 283rd and 488th Motorized Rifle Regiments of the 144th Motorized Rifle Division of the 20th Army were halted by the units of the “Khortytsia” OSG and slightly also pushed back.  
  • The enemy deployed assault companies from the composition of the 4th Tank Division (1st Tank Army) and the 283rd Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 144th Motorized Rifle Division (20th Army) in the Terny area in order to resume the offensive. Russian attempt to attack from the north in the Makiyivka was proved unsuccessful. In the Bilohorivka area, the 7th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 2nd Army Corps, significantly reinforced by fresh troops, is trying to displace the forward units of the “Khortytsia” OSG from Bilohorivka (upper). Still, it has also been halted in the area of the Bilohorivka industrial zone. The Ukrainian Defense Forces hold positions in the area of the chalk quarry, blocking the enemy’s advance along Vodoprovodna Street and from the side of the terrikons towards Bilohorivka.
  • On the Bakhmut direction, extremely intense battles are ongoing from Andriivka to Bohdanivka. The Russian forces seek to break through to Chasiv Yar to threaten Kostiantynivka further and regain control over Klishchiivka and Andriivka. The enemy persistently conducts futile frontal attacks on the positions of the Defense Forces near Ivanivske, which they fully control.
  • Positional battles have been ongoing near Bohdanivka, Klishchiivka, Andriivka, and Pivdenne. The 200th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 14th Army Corps of the Russian Northern Fleet is launching a frontal advance on Bohdanivka and attacking the flanks of the village.
  • On the Avdiivka direction, Russian forces have advanced in the areas of Stepove, Lastochkyne, Nevelske, and Pervomaiske.
  • Units of the “Tavriya” OSG have been completely withdrawn from the Avdiivka Coking Plant. Positional battles are ongoing near Novobakhmutivka and Severne.
  • On the Shakhtarsk direction, Russian forces made slight progress north of Maryinka. Positional battles were ongoing near Heorhiivka, Pobeda, and Novomykhailivka.
  • On the Berdyansk direction, positional battles were ongoing near Staromayorske and Prechystivka. North of Pryiutne, the Russian 143rd Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 127th Motorized Rifle Division of the 5th Army attempted to attack.
  • On the Tokmak direction, over the past 5 days, Russian forces have conducted targeted assaults with the involvement of armored vehicles in the area of Robotyne. Another enemy reconnaissance engagement with an attempt to break into Robotyne itself failed. A portion of the enemy assault detachment entered the village and surrendered to the Ukrainian Defense Forces.
  • Russian forces advanced to the western outskirts of Robotyne, over a kilometer west of Verbove, and up to 2 km near Robotyne. The enemy increased the intensity of artillery and aviation strikes near Kamianske; its 49th Separate Air Assault Brigade of the 58th Army achieved tactical successes in this area. Positional battles were taking place near Malynivka. The 392nd Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 42nd Motorized Rifle Division of the 58th Army is engaged in combat near Pyatykhatky.
  • 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 with the total “Kalibr” missile salvo of 8 cruise missiles.

Change in enemy disposition: 

  • Under Avdiivka, the 55th, 35th, and 74th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigades of the 41st Army, and the 6th Tank Regiment of the 90th Tank Division are in operation. Near Pervomaiske, the 9th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 1st Army Corps is active, and close to Nevelske, the 110th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 1st Army Corps is deployed.
  • The enemy’s command has relocated at least one combined regiment from the 116th Separate Brigade of Operational Purpose to the “Belgorod” Operational Grouping. In the designated areas, there are concentrated 2,307 personnel, 14-16 tanks, 142 armored vehicles (45 BMPs, 69 APCs, 28 armored cars), no less than 36 artillery pieces, up to 70 units of automotive and special equipment, and a field depot of rocket and artillery weapons. The regiment is in a defensive position on both sides of the Belgorod – Kursk – Moscow road. Armed with a wide range of weaponry, the regiment is capable of conducting general-purpose warfare and does not fully align with the concept of a policing unit.

Escalation indicators: 

  • The enemy has significantly increased the intensity of hostilities in the Tokmak sector.

Possible operation situation developments: 

  • 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 area of Novomykhailivka, the enemy will initially attempt to split the combat formations of the “Tavriya” OSG in the northern part of the Vuhledar bulge, in the general direction of Novomykhailivka – Paraskoviivka – Kostiantynivka. Subsequently, they will attack south of Vodyane, thus compelling the “Tavriya” OSG to withdraw from its positions near Volodymyrivka and north of Mykilske.
  • The successful concentrated deployment of Russian aviation in the Avdiivka direction is expected to serve as a precedent for similar actions in other sectors of the front.

Russian operational losses from 24.02.22 to 20.02.24  

Personnel – almost 404,950 people (+1,230); 

Tanks – 6,503 (+5); 

Armored combat vehicles – 12,268 (+36); 

Artillery systems – 9,773 (+40);

Multiple rocket launchers (MLRS) – 988 (+2);

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 675 (+1);

Vehicles and fuel tanks – 12,805 (+38);

Aircraft – 338 (+2);

Helicopters – 325 (0);

UAV operational and tactical level – 7,521 (+61);

Intercepted cruise missiles – 1,902 (+3);

Boats/ships – 26 (0).


  • According to information provided by the Situation Center of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Russian troops shelled 11 regions of Ukraine over the past day. A total of 138 towns and villages and 114 infrastructure objects were attacked with various types of weapons. Ten people were reported injured in different regions of Ukraine. The number of casualties is being updated/clarified.
  • During the night of February 20, Russian forces launched 3 missiles and 23 “Shahed” drones at Ukraine; all enemy drones were successfully destroyed. A fire broke out at an industrial facility in the Kremenchuk district of Poltava Oblast as a result of the attack. Debris from the downed Russian “Shahed” damaged 3 summer houses and 2 cars in the Dniprovsky district of the Dnipropetrovsk Oblast.
  • Russian troops launched a kamikaze drone at a civilian car in the Kupyansk district of Kharkiv Oblast at about 16:50 today. Two men were killed, and a woman was injured.
  • On the morning of February 20th, Russian forces targeted a residential building in the Novoslobidska community of the Konotop district in Sumy Oblast with an explosive-laden drone. As a result of the strike, a family was killed: a mother and two sons, as well as two of their distant relatives.
  • Another 11 Ukrainian children have been successfully repatriated to Ukraine from Russia and the temporarily occupied territories. They were repatriated through the mediation of the state of Qatar, with the support of UNICEF, and with the assistance of the State Border Guard Service.

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