Relatives of soldiers from Tatarstan, have released a video message expressing concerns that their loved ones are being sent to engage in an offensive against Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) positions in the Svatovsky direction, Luhansk region.
This appears to relate specifically to the 2nd battalion of the 1234th regiment in military unit 29660.
Relatives of the mobilised men from Tatarstan are puzzled as to why the battalion was placed on the zero line in Svatove direction, and not in defence as promised, and is taking "colossal casualties" as a result.— WarTranslated (Dmitri) (@wartranslated) October 15, 2023
Regiment number 1234. pic.twitter.com/EXD8UbjOhk
In the video, a young man from the battalion speaks out, revealing that the unit has primarily been dedicated to defensive operations for the past two years.
However, a recent shift has seen one portion of the battalion redirected to participate in an offensive, while the remainder is preparing to follow suit in the coming days.
This tactical change has come at a significant cost, as the battalion has suffered what the speaker refers to as "colossal losses."
"We are not opposed to defending our country and fulfilling our constitutional duty. We kindly request that the orders of Supreme Commander Vladimir Putin and Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu be reconsidered. The mobilized soldiers should be assigned to defensive roles, rather than placed on the front lines."
The video message concludes with a plea: "Bring our men back!"
According to the recent ISW report, Russian forces conducted offensive operations along the Kupyansk-Svatove-Kreminna line, near Bakhmut, along the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line, in the western Donetsk-eastern Zaporizhzhia region border area, and in western Zaporizhzhia region.
Whilst there were understood to be advances in some areas, an intercepted call released by Ukraine's Military Intelligence Directorate (HUR) revealed that assault operations in Svatove and Kupiansk are not going according to plan.
In a recorded conversation, a mother speaks with her son, who is believed to be fighting in Ukraine.
She then says that reports on Russian state media claimed that Moscow’s forces were poised to retake the city of Kupyansk in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region.
“Do they really need Kupyansk?” she asks.
The soldier then ridicules the claims, saying: “We can't even secure a forest belt here, and they still want to win back Kupyansk.”
Kupyansk - a strategically unimportant Ukrainian town close to the Russian border in Ukraine’s north-eastern Kharkiv province - made world headlines in September 2022 as the high-water mark of a successful Kyiv counteroffensive.
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter