Defense forces continue successful offensive at Bakhmut and Melitopol directions - ISW
Ukrainian defenders continue offensive actions near Bakhmut in Donetsk region and in the western Zaporizhzhia region
The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reports.
It is noted that Ukrainian forces continued offensive operations and inflicted significant losses on Russian manpower and equipment in the Melitopol (western Zaporizhia Oblast) direction. In addition, the Ukrainian forces continued offensive actions in the Bakhmut direction and are consolidating in newly secured lines.
According to British intelligence, Ukrainian forces secured positions in Klishchiivka (7km southwest of Bakhmut) and Andriivka (10km southwest of Bakhmut) and that Russian redeployments of airborne (VDV) forces from Bakhmut to the Zaporizhia direction have weakened Russian defenses around Bakhmut.
Analysts noted that they had previously observed elements of the 83rd Separate Air Assault Brigade operating in Zaporizhia, although it is unclear how large a proportion of that unit was redeployed from Bakhmut.
The liberation of Andriivka and Klishchiivka near Bakhmut
On September 14, Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar said that the Ukrainian military had liberated the village of Andriivka near Bakhmut in Donetsk region. However, the 3rd Brigade denied the statement and called it false.
On September 14, the Defense Forces successfully advanced in the area of Klishchiivka, Donetsk region. According to the General Staff, as of the morning of September 15, the Ukrainian Armed Forces had liberated Andriivka.
On September 16, the American Institute for the Study of War noted that after the Ukrainian military liberated Andriivka, they continued offensive operations near Bakhmut and in the western Zaporizhzhia region. At the same time, the tactical situation south of Bakhmut worsened for the Russian army.
On September 17, the Ukrainian Defense Forces completely liberated Klishchiivka, but the Russian forces continued their attempts to capture the town.
On September 18, the General Staff stated that the Ukrainian military repelled Russian attacks near Bila Hora in the Bakhmut direction, and in the area of Klishchiivka in Donetsk region, they continued assault operations, inflicted significant losses in manpower and equipment on the enemy, and consolidated their positions.
Subsequently, the deputy commander of the 3rd separate assault brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Major Rodion Kudriashov, noted that after the successful advance of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, an opportunity to liberate Bakhmut from the occupiers opened up.