Центр оборонних стратегій

Russia’s war on Ukraine. 18.05.2024

In the operational zone of the Ukrainian Operational-Strategic Group of Forces (OSG) “Kharkiv” on the Kharkiv direction, the enemy made two attempts to breach the Ukrainian defense lines in the Hlyboke-Lyptsi and Buhruvatka-Starytsya directions. The situation is under control by the Ukrainian Defense Forces, who are conducting assault operations in certain areas to improve their tactical positions and clearing the area. In the Vovchansk area, the defense is being strengthened to enhance the tactical situation.

In the “Khortytsia” OSG operational zone on the Kupyansk direction, there were 6 engagements. The OSG units successfully repelled 3 enemy attacks. Combat engagements are ongoing in the Kyslivka-Ivanivka and Krokhmalne-Berestove directions. On the Siversk direction, Russian forces made five attempts to breach the defense, concentrating efforts around Rozdolivka. On the Kramatorsk direction, the number of engagements has increased to 15. The Ukrainian Defense Forces have held their positions, and the situation remains tense.

In the “Tavriya” OSG operational zone, on the Pokrovsk direction, combat operations are ongoing in the areas of Novooleksandrivka, Sokol, and Nevelske. The occupiers persist in their attempts to advance towards Novooleksandrivka. On the Kurakhove direction, the enemy made 16 attempts to break through the Ukrainian defense, with ongoing combat in the areas of Paraskoviivka and Vodyane. On the Vremivka direction, the enemy made 3 attempts to improve their tactical positions, two of which were repelled near Staromayorske. Fighting continues in the Rozdilne area.

In the operational zone of the “Odesa” OSG on the Prydniprovskiy direction, the occupiers continue their attempts to dislodge the Ukrainian Defense Forces from their positions on the left bank of the Dnipro River. The Ukrainian Defense Forces successfully repelled 13 enemy attacks in the vicinity of Krynky.

General conclusion: 

  • Since the beginning of offensive operations in northern Kharkiv Oblast, Russian forces have expanded the active combat zone by approximately 70 km, attempting to compel the Ukrainian Defense Forces to deploy their reserves.
  • On the Lyman direction, the enemy has made advances in the areas of Kyslivka and Krokhmalne, attempting to encircle Tabaiivka.
  • The enemy is trying to advance in the Keramik area along the Donetsk-Kostyantynivka highway.
  • Positional battles continue on most directions, with both sides regrouping their forces, aiming to secure more advantageous positions for future operations.

Change in the line of contact (LoC):

  • There were 101 combat engagements on various fronts.
  • On the Kharkiv direction, Russian forces continued their offensive actions near Lyptsi and Hlyboke, advancing south of Hlyboke and engaging in combat on the outskirts of Lyptsi, attempting to expand their control zone near Lukyantsi. Minefields installed by the Ukrainian Defense Forces are complicating and slowing down the enemy’s advance near Lyptsi and Zelene. Near Lyptsi, the enemy is attempting to attack using reconnaissance and sabotage groups, utilizing dense wooded areas to conceal their maneuvers.
  • In the area of Vovchansk, Russian forces advanced east of Tykhe, seized Zybyne, and engaged in combat near Starytsya and Buhruvatka. The enemy is seeking to consolidate its positions on the northern outskirts of Vovchansk near the aggregate production plant and the Vovchansk central district hospital.
  • On the Kupyansk direction, Russian forces have advanced west and south of Krokhmalne and towards Pishchane, launched attacks in the areas of Synkivka, Vilshana, Ivanivka, Berestove, Kyslivka, Stelmakhivka, Myasozharivka, and Novoyehorivka.
  • On the Lyman direction, Russian forces have advanced within the northeastern part of Bilohorivka, launching attacks near Nevske and Dibrova.
  • On the Siversk direction, Russian forces attacked near Spirne, Vyimka, and Rozdolivka.
  • On the Kramatorsk direction, the enemy attacked near the “Novyi” neighborhood, Kalynivka, Bohdanivka, Ivanivske, Klishchiivka, Andriivka, and New York.
  • The UkrainianDefense Forces counterattacked near Kalynivka and are defending in basements in the western part of Bohdanivka.
  • On the Pokrovsk direction, Russian forces made slight advancements along the forest strip to the southwest of Solovyove, along Naberezhna Street in the western part of Netaylove, and east of Novooleksandrivka. They also attacked in the areas of Arkhanhelske, Ocheretyne, Umanske, and Yasnobrodivka.
  • On the Kurakhove direction, Units of the 150th Motorized Rifle Division of the 8th Army advanced to the western outskirts of Heorhiivka. The enemy continued attacks near Krasnohorivka, Paraskoviivka, Novomykhailivka, “Pivdenna” Mine No. 1, Vodyane, and Mykilske.
  • On the Vremivka direction, Russian forces continued their attacks near Staromayorske and Urozhaine.
  • On the Orikhiv direction, Russian forces continue to clear the occupied part of Robotyne. Positional battles are ongoing near Verbove.
  • On the Kherson direction, Russian forces intensified shelling of the Ukrainian foothold in Krynky, but Ukrainian forces did not lose their positions in this area. Positional battles continued in the areas between the “Oleshkivski Pisky” Reserve and Krynky, as well as between Kozachi Laheri and Krynky.
  • In the Black Sea-Azov naval operational area, the enemy naval group on combat duty consists of:
    • Mediterranean Sea: 4 ships, including 1 “Kalibr” sea launched cruise missile carrier. The total salvo is 8 cruise missiles.

Changes in the enemy disposition:

  • The 14th Separate SOF Brigade operates near Vuhledar.
  • The 37th Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 36th Combined Arms Army and the 69th Separate Radio Interception Battalion of the 35th Combined Arms Army operate near Hulyaipole.

Possible operation situation developments:

  • Expect enemy capture of Synkivka soon, along with intense rear-guard actions north of Kupyansk’s eastern outskirts, for Stepova Novoselivka, Pishchane, and Berestove.
  • The adversary may attempt to bypass Chasiv Yar without directly assaulting the city, by operating from the south and southeast, while simultaneously forming a northern flank for the Toretsk operation.
  • The “Center” Operational Grouping command is focused on executing the following operational plan: to establish conditions for the blockade and encirclement of the Kurakhove area or to create advantageous circumstances for launching an offensive operation to encircle “Tavriya” OSG’s defense in Toretsk area from the south.
  • The enemy’s “Vostok” Operational Grouping is gearing up for active operations on the southern flank of the Kurakhove-Vuhledar bulge of the Ukrainian Defense Forces in coordination with the left flank of the “Yug” Operational Grouping, which is currently attempting to break through towards Kurakhove through Hryhorivka and Paraskoviivka-Kostyantynivka along the Vovcha and Sukhi Yaly Rivers.

Russian operational losses from 24.02.22 to 18.05.24  

Personnel – almost 491,080 (+1210); 

Tanks 7,560 (+13); 

Armored combat vehicles – 14,595 (+43); 

Artillery systems – 12,639 (+36);

Multiple rocket launchers (MLRS) – 1,071 (0);

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 801 (+1);

Vehicles and fuel tanks – 17,169 (+65);

Aircraft – 354 (+1);

Helicopters – 325 (0);

UAV operational and tactical level – 10,108 (+35);

Intercepted cruise missiles – 2,203 (+3);

Boats/ships – 27 (0).


  • According to information provided by the Situation Center of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Russian forces shelled 12 regions of Ukraine over the past day. A total of 100 towns and villages and 123 infrastructure objects were attacked with various types of weapons. The number of casualties is being updated/clarified.
  • In the early hours of Saturday, the Ukrainian Air Force shot down all 13 Russian “Shahed” drones that were launched against Ukraine.
  • In the early hours of May 18, Russia attacked Poltava Oblast, damaging energy infrastructure.
  • The air raid alert in Kharkiv Oblast lasted for 6 hours on May 18. As a results of a Russian attack on a residential area of Kharkiv, five people were injured, including a 13 and a 16-year-old who sustained light injuries.
  • In the afternoon of May 18, occupants shelled the village of Tyahynka in the Beryslav district with a tank. A 67-year-old man, who was on the street during the shelling, sustained fatal injuries.
  • Russian military dropped an explosive device from a drone on two residents of Stanislav, Kherson Oblast, killing a man and injuring a woman.
  • As a result of enemy shelling in Vovchansk, Kharkiv Oblast, a woman was killed, and four civilians were injured. Additionally, a man in the Vovchansk community sustained injuries.
  • On May 16, four civilians attempted to leave Vovchansk by car. While driving through the city, they came under enemy fire – the 70-year-old driver and an 83-year-old passenger were killed instantly. The driver’s wife and another passenger were injured, the office of the Ukrainian Prosecutor General reported.
  • NEC Ukrenerho has announced that tomorrow, May 19, power outages are planned only for Kharkiv and Poltava Oblasts, both for industrial and residential consumers, due to repair works. The rest of Ukraine will experience no planned outages.
  • Russia, through “Rossotrudnichestvo,” has increased spending on programs for foreign “journalists, bloggers, and youth.” In the first four months of 2024, “Rossotrudnichestvo” announced tenders worth 230 million rubles ($2.5 million) for the “correct coverage” of the war—more than the total for all of 2023, the National Resistance Center of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry reported.

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