Ukrainian military officer warns of Russian attempts to break defense in Chasiv Yar

Ukrainian military in Donetsk Oblast
Ukrainian military in Donetsk Oblast

The Russian troops are intensifying their efforts to breach Ukrainian defenses in Chasiv Yar, a National Guard officer, Dmytro Kozhubenko, said on national television on May 23.

"Now the enemy is focusing on Chasiv Yar," Kozhubenko stated. "They want to break the backbone of our defense and reach the Kramatorsk-Slovyansk agglomeration."

Despite the heavy focus, Kozhubenko remains confident in the resilience of the Ukrainian forces. "People of steel standing there make it almost impossible to break their backbone. I don't know what needs to be done – the Russians definitely don't have it," he said, underscoring the formidable resistance faced by Russian forces.

Read also: Elite HUR combat unit Kraken shows footage of ongoing Chasiv Yar battle

Situation near the town of Chasiv Yar

Russia's top military leadership had set a task for its soldiers to capture the town west of Bakhmut, Chasiv Yar, by May 9, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Oleksandr Syrskyi, said back in April.

The enemy is concentrating its efforts to break through the defense and gain access to the Siverskyi Donets-Donbas canal to create conditions for further advancement toward the Kramatorsk agglomeration.

The U.S.-based Institute for the Study of War reported on April 10 that in an attempt to make their way to Chasiv Yar, the Russians are resorting to tactics that helped them capture Avdiivka. The positions of Ukrainian defenders are being intensively pounded by guided aerial bombs and fire from warplanes and helicopters.

Read also: Russia scrambles for Chasiv Yar – military observer

If the Russians succeed in capturing Chasiv Yar, they will launch an offensive against Kostiantynivka, Druzhkivka, Kramatorsk and Slovyansk, the Ukrainian military says.

General Syrskyi confirmed on April 28 that the situation at the front had escalated. Ukrainian units withdrew to the west of Berdychi, Semenivka and Novomykhailivka.

The Institute for the Study of War reported on May 22 that Russia used the operation in the north of Kharkiv Oblast to intensify a dangerous offensive on Chasiv Yar.

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