August 16, 2022

EUNews24

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Russian forces take ‘operational pause’ in Ukraine war: Analysts

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Russia may be temporarily easing its offensive in eastern Ukraine in a bid to reassemble the strength of its forces, analysts say.

Russia may be temporarily easing its military offensive in eastern Ukraine as the Russian military attempts to reassemble its forces for a significant – and what it hopes could prove decisive – new offensive, analysts say.

Russian forces made no claimed or assessed territorial gains in Ukraine “for the first time in 133 days of war” on Wednesday, according to the Institute for the Study of War.

The Washington-based think-tank based suggested that Moscow may be taking an “operational pause”, but that does not entail “the complete cessation of active hostilities” in Ukraine.

“Russian forces will likely confine themselves to relatively small-scale offensive actions as they attempt to set conditions for more significant offensive operations and rebuild the combat power needed to attempt those more ambitious undertakings,” the institute said.

Russia’s defence ministry seemed to confirm that assessment in a statement on Thursday.

The ministry said Russian military units involved in combat in Ukraine had been given time to rest.

“The units that performed combat missions during the special military operation are taking measures to recover their combat capabilities. The servicemen are given the opportunity to rest, receive letters and parcels from home,” read the statement, quoted by Russian state news agency TASS.

Shelling continued in Ukraine’s east, where at least nine civilians were killed and six wounded in 24 hours, Ukrainian officials said early Thursday.

Ukraine’s presidential office said in its morning update that cities and villages in seven of the country’s regions were shelled in the past day.

Later on Thursday, a missile hit a residential area in the Donetsk city of Kramatorsk, killing one civilian and injuring at least six others, officials said. Cars and broken trees smouldered at the scene of the missile attack, which left a crater in the centre of a residential courtyard.

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