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Ukraine War Update: Russia Is ‘Repositioning’ In Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia

A U.S. Army M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) launches ordnance during RED FLAG-Alaska 21-1 at Fort Greely, Alaska, Oct. 22, 2020. This exercise focuses on rapid infiltration and exfiltration to minimize the chance of a counterattack. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Beaux Hebert)

In an update shared on Saturday, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine revealed how Russian forces are repositioning in Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia.

What Is Russia Up To in Ukraine Now?

According to the update, Moscow is working to bolster defense lines and prevent any further Ukrainian victories, following the retreat of Russian troops from Kherson, which includes moving engineering equipment to the front line while also “continuing the offensive in some directions.”

The update also describes how Russian forces continue to strike civilian objects as they reposition in Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia with the support of newly deployed army reservists.

“The opponent does not stop striking civilian objects. Focuses efforts to contain the actions of Defense Forces units, conducts engineering equipment of defense borders and positions, continues offensive operations in individual directions. It tries to make up for losses in personnel warehouse, weapons, ammunition, equipment and fuel. The enemy continues to regroup troops in order to strengthen units and units in Limansʹkomu, Avdií часvsʹkomu and Novopavlívsʹkomus directions,” the update reads.

The General Staff also described how Ukrainian forces repelled attacks from the Russians close to the Stelmakhivka and Dibrova settlements in Luhansk Oblast, as well as in nine other regions of Donetsk Oblast. A total of six missile strikes, 14 airstrikes, and 59 multiple-launch rocket system strikes were carried out in the space of just one day.

As Russian forces reportedly reposition in Donetsk and Zaporizhia, the Ukrainian military suggested that Russian troops are now focusing on offensive operations in Avdiivka and Bakhmut.

Russia Preparing New Defense Strategies In Crimea?

The update also described how intelligence suggests that Russian soldiers in the city of Dzhankoy in Crimea have established a shooting range. The range is understood to have been set up in the Kalinivsky Regional Landscape Park.

A local mayor also told Russia’s state-run TASS news agency on Friday that air defense systems had been triggered in the Crimean town of Armiansk, a region that has also seen Russian forces building new fortifications, possibly preparing for a fresh Ukrainian offensive.

Armiansk and Henichensk, two towns that sit on Crimea’s border, have seen a spike in Russian activity according to a report from the Institute for the Study of War.

The think tank revealed how satellite imagery shows that extensive new fortifications are being built in the area, including long trenches, following the retreat of Russian soldiers from Kherson city.

The retreat means that Crimea is now within firing distance of Ukrainian-operated HIMARS missile systems.

Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor.

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Written By

Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive's Breaking News Editor. He 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.