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Russian Forces Push Closer to Kupyansk

Aug. 12, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—The Russian offensive at the northern end of the front is continuing in the Kharkov region. “In Kupyansk direction, assault groups of the Zapad Group of Forces continued offensive actions on a broad front and improved the tactical situation near Olshana and Pershotravnyovoye (Kharkov region) utilizing results of artillery and aviation strikes,” the Russian Defense Ministry reported yesterday. Russian forces have advanced to within 7 km of Kupyansk. They had captured Kupyansk in 2022 but were forced to withdraw in the fall.

Army Col. Anatoliy Matviychuk (ret.), a veteran Soviet and Russian military intelligence officer and analyst, with experience in Afghanistan and Syria, told Sputnik that the advance will make Kyiv’s forces hard pressed to fill gaps in the frontlines as their mobility is restricted by Russian air and artillery superiority.

“First of all, this is great news that we are returning those territories that we left in the fall, during the forced withdrawal. Second, we are advancing, destroying the enemy’s reserves, destroying the enemy’s manpower and equipment, and this is very important, because we’re approaching Slavyansk and Kramatorsk. Effectively, we’re not only creating the prerequisites for the return of these lands, but also for the destruction of the entire [enemy] group of forces in this area,”

Matviychuk said.

If the Russian advance continues and Kupyansk is taken, it will have long-term significance, he said.

“Kupyansk occupies a very advantageous position. Both to the west and to the east it is a logistical link—both roads and a railway for the transport of supplies. In general, I would call this a strategic point on whose retention the stability of the defense of this entire direction depends. The loss of Kupyansk means the loss of stability, and after that we will be able to go directly to the Kharkov direction,”

Matviychuk summed up.

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