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Russia’s war on Ukraine. 16.03.2024

In the operational zone of the Ukrainian Operational-Strategic Group of Forces (OSG) “Khortytsia” on the Kupyansk direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 3 enemy attacks in the areas near Synkivka and Tabaivka, where the enemy tried to improve its tactical position. On the Lyman direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 9 Russian attacks in the area of Bilohorivka, Terny and Rozdolivka, where the enemy, utilizing air support, attempted to breach Ukrainian defenses. On the Bakhmut direction, they repelled 3 Russian attacks in the areas east of Andriivka and Klishchiivka.

In the “Tavriya” OSG operational zone on the Avdiivka direction, the Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled 26 enemy attacks in the area of Berdychi, Orlivka, Tonenke, Pervomaiske. On the Novopavlivka direction, they continued holding back the enemy in the areas of Krasnohorivka, Heorhiivka, Novomykhailivka, where the adversary utilizing air support attempted to breach Ukrainian troops’ defenses 24 times. On the Orikhiv direction, the enemy attacked the positions of the Ukrainian Defense Forces 7 times in the areas of Staromayorske in Donetsk Oblast, and Robotyne.

In the operational zone of the “Odesa” OSG on the Kherson direction, the enemy remains determined to dislodge the units of the Ukrainian Defense Forces from the bridgeheads on the left bank of the Dnipro and made 3 unsuccessful assaults.

General conclusion:

  • The enemy command is attempting to maintain the pace of their offensive operations across the entire front, trying to hinder the Ukrainian Defense Forces from stabilizing the front line.
  • Russian forces have concentrated their efforts on the Avdiivka direction and launch daily assaults, attempting to break through the “Tavriya” OSG defenses.
  • Despite the Ukrainian Defense Forces managing to impede the enemy’s advancement west of Avdiivka, the widespread shortage of resources due to delays in Western military assistance necessitates the Ukrainian military command to prioritize specific sectors of the front. By concentrating available resources in crucial sectors, the vulnerability to breakthroughs in other areas is heightened, rendering the entire front line more fragile.
  • The enemy command will continue to leverage their initiative advantage on the theater of operations to dynamically change the direction of their main attacks in the first half of 2024 and identify weaker defense areas of the Ukrainian Defense Forces.
  • The Ukrainian Air Defense System’s effectiveness, particularly in intercepting aerial threats, has dropped from a ratio of “4 out of 5” to “1 out of 5.” This has compelled the Ukrainian military command to grapple with challenging decisions concerning the deployment and maneuvering of available air defense resources in rear and near-front areas. Concurrently, the adversary is actively seeking to wear down the Ukrainian air defense system, continuously testing different methods and tactics for missile and air strikes.
  • The State Commission of the Russian Federation on Radio Frequencies has proposed changes that would allow Russian UAV operators to use special radio frequencies to communicate with aircraft crews, as UAV operators currently use standard frequencies that are often overloaded, causing issues.
  • The loss of aircraft in the southeastern part of Ukraine has prompted the enemy command to transfer strike aircraft from Maykop to the Kushchevskaya air base to sustain the frequency of air strikes employing guided munitions. This relocation predominantly affects the Donetsk direction.

Change in the line of contact (LoC):  

  • There were 78 combat engagements on various fronts.
  • On the Kupyansk direction, Russian forces have made slight advancements east of Synkivka.
  • Positional battles have been ongoing in the areas of Synkivka, Pershotravneve, and Tabaivka.
  • On the Lyman direction, Russian forces have advanced slightly by 300 meters in the areas east of Terny and Yampolivka, near Bilohorivka. Positional battles have been ongoing near Terny, Yampolivka, Bilohorivka, and in the vicinity of Serebryansk Forest.
  • On the Bakhmut direction, “Khortytsia” OSG units have displaced Russian forces from certain positions. Positional battles have been ongoing in the areas of Bilohorivka, Rozdolivka, Bohdanivka, Ivanivske, Klishchiivka, Andriivka, and New York.
  • On the Avdiivka direction, Russian forces have advanced westward in Berdychi, penetrating up to 400 meters between Orlivka and Tonenke, within the perimeter of Pervomaiske. Russian troops conduct assaults with small infantry groups.
  • The “Tavriya” OSG units controlling the heights northwest of Avdiivka, near Novobakhmutivka and Ocheretyne, along with the maneuvers of mechanized units of the Ukrainian Defense Forces near Berdychi, are impeding the enemy’s progress.
  • Positional battles have been ongoing in the areas of Novobakhmutivka, Berdychi, Semenivka, Orlivka, Tonenke, Pervomaiske, and Nevelske.
  • On the Novopavlivka direction, Russian forces have advanced to a depth of up to 1.5 kilometers north of Novomykhailivka. Positional battles have been ongoing in the areas of Krasnohorivka, Heorhiivka, Novomykhailivka, Pobieda, and Vodyane.
  • Berdyansk direction: positional battles were taking place in the areas of Novodonetske, Shevchenkove, Volodymyrivka, Staromayorske, and Urozhaine. The 37th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade, positioned north of Novodonetske, and the 5th Separate Tank Brigade, stationed west of Staromayorske, launched aggressive assaults, exerting pressure on the flanks of the Ukrainian Defense Forces in the area, aiming to push forward towards Vremivka and Velyka Novosilka. In the area between Novodonetske and Staromayorske, the 60th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade and the 394th Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 127th Motorized Rifle Division of the enemy conduct containment operations, albeit without achieving success.
  • Orikhiv direction: the 247th Air Assault Regiment of the enemy’s 7th Air Assault Division advanced north and northwest of Verbove.
  • Positional battles have been ongoing near Robotyne and Verbove.
  • In the Black Sea-Azov naval operational area, the enemy naval group on combat duty consists of:
    • Mediterranean Sea: 2 ships, including 1 Cruise Missile Carrier. The total salvo is 4 “Kalibr” cruise missiles.

Changes in the enemy disposition:

  • The units of the 2nd Separate SOF Brigade are defending at the border between Ukraine and Belgorod and Kursk Oblasts.
  • The 6th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 2nd Army Corps of the 8th Army is advancing in the area of Spirne.
  • The 106th Airborne Division is advancing north of Soledar, and the 238th Artillery Brigade of the 8th Army is engaged in combat near Horlivka.
  • The 3rd Motorized Rifle Battalion of the 60th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 5th Army is advancing near Staromayorske, and units of the 26th Chemical, Biological, and Radiological Protection Regiment of the 36th Army are advancing near Volodymyrivka.
  • 4 Su-35S fighters from the 23rd Fighter Aviation Regiment of the 303rd Mixed Air Division of the 11th Air Force and Air Defense Army and 4 Su-34 bombers from the 968th Mixed Aviation Regiment, previously redeployed from Lipetsk to Maykop Aviation Base, have been relocated from Maykop to Kushchevskaya Aviation Base. In addition to escorting bombers, the enemy command actively involves Su-35S fighters in performing other tasks in the airspace over the Azov Sea and Rostov Oblast, including covering the Kerch Strait bridge, IL-22 relay aircraft, A-50U AWACS aircraft in the airspace over the Rostov region and the Krasnodar Territory. As of the morning of March 12, 2024, there were 5 combat-ready Su-35S and 6 Su-34 aircraft at Kushchevskaya Aviation Base.

Escalation indicators:

  • Russian forces intensified their offensive actions in the Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia Oblasts on the morning of March 14th.

Possible operation situation developments:

  • Over the next 34 months, Russia intends to capture Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk, and Kharkiv Oblasts.
  • The command of the 2nd Army Corps is intensifying the offensive towards Siversk from the direction of Bakhmut.
  • The adversary’s command will commit the 348th Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 90th Tank Division in the direction of Berdychi or Novobakhmutivka.
  • The enemy command will attempt to breach the defense of the Ukrainian “Tavriya” OSG on the Pokrovsk direction. They will advance in the area of Kostiantynivka – Chasiv Yar – Toretsk with the aim of capturing Toretsk.
  • To bolster efforts on the Berdyansk direction, the enemy command may deploy a portion of units from the 34th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade and the 336th Separate Marines Brigade of the Russian Baltic Fleet, which were previously replaced by the 5th Separate Tank Brigade as part of the operational reserve of the “Vostok (East)” Operational Grouping.
  • The command of the 58th Army is poised to imminently deploy the 136th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade into the operation northwest of Robotyne, aiming to bypass this defensive node of the Ukrainian OSG “Tavria” from the north and cut off the Robotyne-Novodanylivka road.

Russian operational losses from 24.02.22 to 16.03.24 

Personnel – almost 429,580  people (+1160);

Tanks – 6,779 (+21);

Armored combat vehicles – 12,973 (+24);

Artillery systems – 10,606 (+26);

Multiple rocket launchers (MLRS) – 1,017 (0);

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 719 (+2);

Vehicles and fuel tanks – 14,024 (+31);

Aircraft – 347 (0);

Helicopters – 325 (0);

UAV operational and tactical level – 8,268 (+14);

Intercepted cruise missiles – 1,922 (+2);

Boats/ships – 27 (0).


  • According to information provided by the Situation Center of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Russian troops shelled 10 regions of Ukraine over the past day. A total of 125 towns and villages and 174 infrastructure objects were attacked with various types of weapons. The number of casualties is being updated/clarified.
  • In Odesa, according to updated information, hospitals are currently treating 38 individuals injured in the missile strike on March 15th, with 11 of them in critical condition. Another emergency worker who was injured in the rocket attack on Odessa has passed away in the hospital.
  • The intensity of Russian bombardments in Sumy Oblast has sharply increased, with the region now experiencing up to 40 air raid alerts per day. Evacuation efforts are ongoing in the Velykopysarivka community of Okhtyrka district in Sumy Oblast. Priority is given to evacuating children, with 190 residents evacuated in the last three days, including 26 children.
  • At 02:25, a Shahed UAV struck Kozacha Lopan in Kharkiv Oblast. A critical infrastructure object was damaged, but there were no casualties. At 17:40, Russians attacked Okhrymivka in Chuhuyiv district with a UAV, injuring two men aged 48 and 35. At 16:20, near Zolochiv in Bohodukhiv district, Russians launched an Iskander-M ballistic missile. Sixteen private houses and a hospital were damaged. A dormitory building and four ambulances were destroyed, along with four cars.
  • The Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol initiated 133 criminal proceedings regarding the pseudo-referendum conducted by Russia in Crimea in 2014. At the moment, 118 indictments under Article 111 Part 1 (state treason) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine have been submitted to the court, involving 69 former deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea of the 6th convocation and 49 deputies of the Sevastopol City Council.

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