The Russians continue to prepare defenses in the south in the hope of a Ukrainian counteroffensive
The fighting in Bakhmut has become less active due to the counter-offensive actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on the flanks, analysts say.
The pace of hostilities in Bakhmut has slowed down due to counter-offensive actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on the flanks, and in the southern direction, the Russians continue to prepare defenses in the hope of a Ukrainian counter-offensive. This is reported by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).
On May 23, Russian forces launched limited ground attacks northeast of Kupyansk and along the Svatovo-Kremennaya line, analysts said. The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Russian troops were conducting unsuccessful offensive operations near Masyutovka (13 km northeast of Kupyansk) and Belogorovka (10 km south of Kremennaya).
Russian “military bloggers” claimed that the Russian forces “took new positions near Nevsky” (18 km northwest of Kremennaya). However, ISW found no visual confirmation of this claim. A video posted on May 23 allegedly shows unidentified airborne units operating in the woods near Kremennaya.
Ukrainian officials have said that the pace of hostilities in the Bakhmut direction has slowed down due to the extension of limited Ukrainian counterattacks on the flanks of Bakhmut on 23 May.
For the first time since December 2022, the General Staff of Ukraine did not report any fighting in the city of Bakhmut in its 18:00 setting, suggesting that Wagner group forces may have been advancing further within the city.
The General Staff also reported that Russian troops were conducting unsuccessful offensive operations near Khromovoe (immediately west of Bakhmut).
In addition, on May 23, Russian troops continued their offensive on the Avdiivka-Donetsk line. The General Staff of Ukraine reported that Ukrainian troops repelled Russian attacks near Avdiivka, 13 km north of Avdiivka in the Novokalinovoe region and within 14 km west of Avdiivka in the region of Severny, Vodyanoye and Pervomaisky.
Ukrainian forces also reportedly repulsed numerous attacks on Maryinka (about 24km southwest of the city of Donetsk).
As we already wrote, last week Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated PIK Wagner on the alleged capture of Bakhmut.
Meanwhile, on the evening of May 22, the Armed Forces of Ukraine announced that they were able to advance near Bakhmut.
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