Pro-Russian milbloggers believe the fall of Urozhaine – which translates as “harvest” – to be significant.
Colonel Cassad posted the following on his Telegram channel: “If ours are finally squeezed out of [Urozhaine], then the enemy will be able to establish stronger control over Staromaiorske and straighten the front. After which, they will try to increase pressure in the area of Novodonetsk and Pryyutne, and also try to develop an offensive on Staromlynivka. The enemy still has resources for further attacks in this area, so this activity cannot be underestimated.”
Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov stated that, during its counteroffensive, the Ukrainian military sometimes encounters five enemy mines per square meter of territory, The Guardian reported. “Today, Ukraine is the most mined country in the world. Hundreds of [square] kilometers of minefields, millions of explosive devices, in some areas of the front, up to five mines per square meter,” he said. “We have qualified sappers and modern equipment, but this is absolutely not enough for the front, which stretches for hundreds of [square] kilometers in the east and south of Ukraine.”
Operational Aspects on the Southern Front
Urozhaine in the Donetsk-Zaporizhzhia regional border area in the country’s south appears to have been liberated or partially de-occupied by the AFU, based on geolocated images and pro-Russian milblogger claims.
Geo-ocated images released by Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense showed Russian forces fleeing on foot from the village while being shelled with deadly cluster ammunitions.
The Ukrainian MoD released two spectacular videos, showing surviving Russian troops fleeing from Urozhaine.— (((Tendar))) (@Tendar) August 13, 2023
It is absolute carnage because those Russians have no armored vehicles, no vehicles at all and flee in broad daylight on an open road and fields. The 2nd video is even… pic.twitter.com/69ap1T4dLs
Ukraine’s Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar posted on Telegram that “our troops have partial success in the direction of Urozhaine, further south and southeastern Staromaiorske.”
While pro-Russian milbloggers have said the town is either fully or part “surrendered,” the well-regarded Institute for the Study of War (ISW) in its daily report on the evening of Aug. 13 said
Once confirmed, Urozhaine will be the 10th town or village taken by the AFU since the counteroffensive’s commencement in early June. Other de-occupied villages in the district include Staromaiorske, Makarivka, and Blahodatne.
Urozhaine would be the southernmost town taken thus far. It is approximately 10 kilometers into formerly Russian-occupied territory and about 70 kilometers northwest of the strategically and symbolically significant city of Mariupol on the coast of the Sea of Azov.
While the progress has been labelled “tactically significant” by major publications such as the New York Times, Urozhaine appears to be some five to ten kilometers north of the concrete fortifications of the Surovkin Line, which the Russian military has been preparing for more than a year.
Satellite imagery from well-regarded independent analyst, Brady Africk, appears to show the first major Russian concrete fortification points south of Staromlynivka (marked in red dots in above image).
Pro-Ukrainian milbloggers pointed out that Staromlynivka is an “important logistical hub for the Russians in this area” and that there would likely be substantial changes to the Ukrainians’ plan of battle if it were to also fall.
The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Ukrainian forces conducted offensive operations in western Zaporizhzhia region and achieved partial success near Robotyne (13 kilometers south of Orikhiv), according to ISW.
Operational Aspects on the Northern Front
Ukraine and Russia exchanged assaults in the areas of Svatove, Kupyansk and Kreminna, according to ISW.
Operational Aspects on the Eastern Front: Bakhmut
Ukraine and Russia exchanged assaults in the Bakhmut zone, according to ISW.
Other Operational Aspects
Ukrainian forces continue to hold a bridgehead at Kozachi Laheri on the left-bank of the Dnipro River in Kherson region, according to pro-Russian milbloggers. One wrote: “The enemy continues to hold a bridgehead in the area of Kozachi Laheri, bringing in boats to replenish personnel. Heavy fighting is also taking place near the Antonivsky Bridge.”
Several Telegram channels and monitoring groups reported explosions on the Kerch bridge yesterday. The Russian-installed head of temporarily occupied Crimea, Sergey Aksyonov, claims air defense forces shot down two Ukrainian missiles in the Kerch Strait area.
According to the 18:00 report of the General Staff of the AFU, Russian forces launched two missile strikes, 24 air strikes and around 40 MLRS rocket attacks at the positions of Ukrainian troops and various settlements. The Ukrainian Air Force conducted 10 airstrikes.
According to the General Staff, Russian forces shelled and/or mortared 90 Ukrainian population settlements.
Explosions and damage to residential buildings were recorded in Belgorod, according to the governor of the Russian region.
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