In the video, shared by the Ukrainian military and reposted to Twitter by Ukraine Weapons Tracker, the 2S9 Nona self-propelled mortar is seen stationary in a field, surrounded by craters from prior strikes.
In an instant, a Ukrainian strike completely destroyed the weapons system. The blast creates a plume of smoke that quickly rises hundreds of feet into the air, and by the time the smoke clears, a huge new crater can be seen on the ground where the mortar was previously positioned. Shrapnel is seen scattered around the crater.
“Another Russian 2S9 Nona 120mm self-propelled mortar was destroyed by the Ukrainian 128th Territorial Defence Battalion in Klishchiivka near Bakhmut, #Donetsk Oblast,” the post accompanying the video reads.
In January, the Russian Ministry of Defense claimed to have taken control of Klishchiivka, just south of the embattled city of Bakhmut. Before the war, Klishchiivka had a population of just 400 people.
Russia Regaining Momentum In Bakhmut?
According to an intelligence update from the British Ministry of Defence, Russian forces are regaining some momentum in their battle to take control of Bakhmut.
Despite Wagner private forces complaining of a lack of supplies and military equipment in the region, British intelligence suggests that those same private mercenaries could be making some gains after being largely stalled from March.
“In recent days, Russian forces have regained some momentum in the battle for Bakhmut,” the update reads, adding that Russian troops have now seized the west bank of the Bakhmutka River.
“Ukraine’s key 0506 supply route to the west of the town is likely severely threatened,” the update reads.
“Russian regular forces, likely including airborne troops, have probably reinforced the area, and Russia is again using artillery more effectively in the sector.”
#Ukraine: Another Russian 2S9 Nona 120mm self-propelled mortar was destroyed by the Ukrainian 128th Territorial Defence Battalion in Klishchiivka near Bakhmut, #Donetsk Oblast. pic.twitter.com/aVFSK6k2nI
— ???????? Ukraine Weapons Tracker (@UAWeapons) April 7, 2023
The update also warned of a “realistic possibility” that the Russian Ministry of Defense and the Wagner Group have “paused their ongoing feud” and are cooperating to achieve the goal of conquering Bakhmut – something that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has warned could result in Western leaders accepting a compromise deal with Russia to end the war.
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.