Ukraine Repels Russian Attacks As Battle for Kherson Draws Closer: Ukrainian forces used captured Russian weapons against invading forces in the eastern city of Bakhmut on Friday following a bombardment of Russian attacks in Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk, and Luhansk in recent days.
According to a statement from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on November 6, Ukrainian forces repelled attacks by the Russians in 14 settlements in recent days. The statement described how Russian forces attempt to maintain control of occupied territories, focusing specifically on deterring new Ukrainian offensives in strategic areas.
“They are conducting offensive operations in the Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Novopavlovsk directions… Over the past day, the Russian occupiers launched 4 missile and 19 air strikes, carried out more than 75 attacks from multiple launch rocket systems,” the update reads.
In Bakhmut, Russian forces reportedly launched a barrage of attacks against Ukrainian positions in the city, but Kyiv claimed invading forces suffered heavy losses afterward.
Reuters reports how one soldier said that there was a “lot of them,” referring to both Russian soldiers and weapons, and described “intense” fighting over the last week. The outlet reported how Ukrainian forces used a captured 2S23 Nona SVK self-propelled mortar and T-80 tank to repel Russian attacks. Both the Nona and T-80 were reportedly seized in March and spent months being repaired and refitted with new weaponry and armor.
Battle for Kherson Approaches
After months of speculation of a new battle for the Kherson region, Ukrainian officials now expect a new offensive from the Russians to be imminent. It comes after Kirill Stremousov, the deputy head of the Kremlin-installed Kherson administration, told Russian television that he expects Russian troops to put up a fight in the region.
“If we leave Kherson, it will be a huge blow,” he told Russia Today.
Kherson city, which was seized by the Russians when the invasion began, remains a target for the Ukrainian military. By taking back control of the region, as well as the west bank of the Dnieper River, Ukrainian forces would be better positioned to launch an attack on Russia– something Ukrainian President Volodymyr has promised since before the war began.
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin also endorsed the evacuation of civilians from occupied Kherson, an indication that more intense fighting is expected in the coming days and weeks.
Putin said during Russian Unity Day celebrations on Friday that “the civilian population should not suffer” in the area. His comments come after reports revealed that some 70,000 people are already understood to have been moved out of Kherson so far.
Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.
Update: This piece has been updated to correct a wording mistake.