Overview:

  • About 1,000 towns without electricity due to weather, air strikes
  • Russia says it doesn’t care if OSCE dies
  • Putin arrests protesting families of conscripts
  • Mud and “rodents” clog up Zaporizhzhia battlefields and trenches
  • Satellite imagery shows cyclone’s damage to Russian military structures
  • Civilian killed near Avdiivka as Moscow’s forces make gains there

Tens of thousands of Ukrainians without power due to weather and attacks

More than 500 towns in regions across Ukraine experienced power outages due to bad weather, and some 400 more lost power due to Russian attacks and equipment disturbances, the Ukrainian Energy Ministry said, according to The Independent on Sunday.

In the western region of Lviv, about 41,000 households in some 388 towns and villages were left without power due to weather. However, about the same number of households have been without power due to hostilities and technological disturbances, the energy ministry said.

Shelling kills one, injures seven in Kherson region

In addition to a 78-year-old man killed in Russian shelling in Kherson over the weekend, about seven others have been injured in air strikes.

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Oleksandr Prokudin, governor of the Kherson region, said on Telegram on Sunday that Russian forces fired on residential areas with one person killed and seven others injured. “Men aged 28 and 46, women aged 35, 42, and 52, and two 47-year-old women were injured,” he wrote.

Russian artillery reportedly hit an apartment building and a nearby property containing two hospitals, Prokudin said.

Lavrov, Russia believe OSCE might as well cease to exist

After delegates walked out on OSCE talks during the address of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov last week, he said that Russia was “indifferent” as to whether the body continued to exist.

Slovak PM Blasts Ukraine’s Lukoil Sanctions As Oil Flow Stops
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“This is the main feeling: indifference,” Lavrov told reporters on Friday, as reported by AFP. “The organization has already turned itself into something that makes me indifferent to what will happen to it next.”

On Thursday, Lavrov had foreshadowed his remarks about the organization, which was formed in 1975 as a negotiating body between the Soviet Union and the West, and boycotted this year by Ukraine, Poland and Romania. He said the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe had become an “appendage” of NATO and the European Union. 

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“The organization, let’s face it, is on the edge of a precipice. A simple question arises: Does it make sense to invest in its revitalization?” he asked.

Operations: Zaporizhzhia

Muddy conditions and rodents led the blogosphere’s headlines on Sunday along the frontlines in the Zaporizhzhia region. Russian sources claimed that strong winds near Bakhmut and in western parts of the region prevented Moscow’s forces “from using drones and artillery over the past two days,” the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported.

Although light rain still permits Russian forces to conduct aerial reconnaissance near Verbove, the bloggers said, the muddy terrain has posed challenges for vehicles.

One military blogger noted that Russian forces “can only move on tracked vehicles and that Ukrainian forces continue intense artillery fire despite the poor weather conditions.”

Meanwhile, Ukrainian troops have been forced to conduct their attacks on foot, the Russian bloggers claimed.

Meanwhile, in a particularly grotesque attempt at propaganda, “the population of rodents has grown sharply” in the trenches, Moscow-installed Zaporizhzhia official Vladimir Rogov said, posting a video of mice in what he said was a bunker filled with Ukrainian corpses:

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Operations: Bakhmut

Geolocated footage published on Saturday seems to show that Ukrainian forces advanced west of Dibrova (6 km southwest of Kreminna), while Kharkiv regional military administrator Oleh Synehubov claimed that Ukrainian forces are expanding their fortifications, particularly near Kupyansk and Borova (35 km west of Svatove).

Meanwhile, Russian sources claimed over the weekend that Moscow’s troops advanced south of the Berkhivka reservoir (about 2 km northwest of Bakhmut), towards Ivanivske (6 km west of Bakhmut), east of Klishchiivka, and near Andriivka (10 km southwest of Bakhmut), the ISW said.

Putin reportedly cracking down on families protesting mobilization

After signing a decree on Dec. 1 increasing the Russian military from 2.04 million personnel to 2.21 million personnel since his August 2022 decree, Russian President Vladimir Putin has reportedly begun cracking down on families protesting the recent mobilization of their husbands and sons:

 

Operations: Avdiivka

Russian forces reportedly made marginal gains around the Ukrainian-held city of Avdiivka over the weekend, making advances in the western and northwestern periphery.

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Footage that was geolocated by the ISW on Saturday indicates that Russian forces advanced west of the railway north of Stepove (3 km northwest of Avdiivka) and in areas southwest of Pervomaiske (10 km southwest of Avdiivka).

Ukrinform reported, quoting local prosecutors, that a  69-year-old man was killed and two others were injured by shrapnel over the weekend in the nearby village of Kostiantynivka.

Russian sources additionally claimed over the weekend that Moscow’s troops advanced south and southeast of Stepove, south of Novokalynove (13 km northeast of Avdiivka) and west of Krasnohorivka (5 km northwest of Avdiivka).

Operations: Kherson and Crimea

Last week’s cyclone in the Black Sea has had lasting effects on Russia’s military infrastructure along the left bank of the Dnipro River and especially in occupied Crimea, the ISW wrote.

The Ukrainian research group, Center for Journalistic Investigations, over the weekend, presented satellite imagery showing that the Black Sea sandbar connecting Dzharylhach Island to the mainland was washed away in three places, which Russian forces previously had filled in so they could transport troops and supplies to a training center there.

Additional satellite imagery posted on Saturday shows damage to Russian fortifications at the entrance of the Sevastopol harbor.

 

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