Kremlin media on Monday morning announced that Moscow had decided to “regroup” its forces in the Kherson region, in reports that were swiftly retracted.

“Having assessed the situation, the command of the Dnipro group decided to move the troops to more advantageous positions east of the Dnipro,” the Russian media outlets TASS and RIA Novosti had written.

Similar language had been used to announce previous Russian troop retreats in the wake of Ukrainian attacks last year from parts of the Kharkiv and Kherson regions that Russia had occupied at the beginning of its February 2022 Ukraine invasion.

“After the regrouping of Dnipro, part of the forces will be released, which will be used for the offensive in other directions,” RIA Novosti had written.

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But the announcement was swiftly retracted from both sites. The news outlets wrote that their earlier reports were “issued by mistake.”

The Russian Telegram channel Ostorozhno, Novosty, with reference to its source at RIA Novosti, wrote that the state news agency could have received information about the transfer of military personnel from a fake Ministry of Defense account “probably operated from the territory of Ukraine.”

Simultaneously, the chatter from Ukrainian Telegram channels was that there was probably a false start to the planned publications, and that the Russians did not have time to prepare public opinion and the troops for this planned maneuver.

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“A similar situation was observed during the preparation of the Russians to escape from Kherson,” wrote the Telegram channel Ukraine Online, which has more than 1.2 million subscribers.

Ukraine’s National Resistance Center reported it had not seen any evidence of Russian troop movements in the area, saying: “Thus, we can conclude that an information operation against Ukraine is currently underway.”

Russia currently faces a challenging situation in the region as Ukrainian forces have managed to establish and hold a significant bridgehead on the left bank of Dnipro River in the Kherson region.

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Kyiv’s nearly month-old presence held fast on Friday with the two sides trading air, mortar and artillery strikes.

Some Kremlin-associated bloggers declared that Moscow cannot eliminate the Ukrainian Marine-held bridgeheads without deploying reinforcements and especially ground assault troops.

Others meanwhile said Russian counterattacks had contained the bridgehead and were slowly eliminating it.

According to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), the Ukrainian defense forces advanced to the town of Krynki – 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) northeast of Kherson city and 2 kilometers (1.3 miles) east of the Dnipro River – and are conducting offensive operations south of there, around the villages of Poima, Pishchanivka, and Pidstepne.

The ISW reported that the Russian military command will likely find it difficult to transfer combat-capable reinforcements to respond to the Ukrainian operations.

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In an article for RBC-Ukraine, military expert Oleksiy Hetman stated that the Ukrainians’ presence on the occupied left bank of the Dnipro are confusing the Russians.

The ISW also previously reported that the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) are holding positions and expanding their presence on the left bank of the Kherson region.

At the same time, according to British intelligence, the Russian military's ability – or lack thereof – to intensively use artillery will be a decisive factor in the battle for the east bank of the Dnipro River.

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