Russian Federation (RF) troops launched renewed ground assaults in the Siversk, Slovyansk and Bakhmut sectors of Donbas, as Kyiv officials claimed long-range rocket artillery strikes are degrading the Kremlin’s ability to supply its forces with ammunition, government and media sources said on Tuesday, July 5.
A July 6 morning situation update from Ukraine’s Army General Staff (AGS) said that RF infantry and armor units had launched reconnaissance-in-force attacks at multiple locations in the Donbas sector in the past 24 hours, and were repelled with losses at almost all locations.
Serhiy Haidai, head of the Luhansk regional defense command, in a July 6 statement said that RF units near Lysychansk were attempting to expand a bridgehead over the Siversky Donets River, but were met with heavy Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF) artillery fire and their attack had stalled.
“The enemy has used a lot of forces and means, trying to constantly build crossings to transfer even more equipment. Nevertheless, the ‘rashists’ (RF combat units) have suffered many losses (and) hospitals in the occupied territories are overflowing,” Haidai said in part.
Belarusian volunteer Ivan Marchuk, commander of the Kastuś Kalinoŭski battalion, was killed in fighting outside Lysychansk, and other members of the formation were missing following RF attacks, a UNIAN news agency report said. Members of the unit are recruited from Belarusian dissidents who serve as UAF volunteers.
RF-controlled information platforms claimed Russian troops were making incremental advances and destroying UAF troops and equipment. The greatest RF success of the day, the Donetsk-managed news agency Readovka claimed, came with the capture of the village of Spirne.
The site said RF assault against the north Donbas village of Verkhnokamyansk were gaining ground, and once the village is captured would cut UAF supply lines to the key RF objective town of Slovyansk.
Both RF- and UAF-associated sources confirmed that UAF units in the north Volnovakha sector captured the village of Solodke in a limited counterattack. The Ukrainian advance pushed RF forces towards the city of Dokuchayevsk and away from the town of Vuhledar, another top target of the ongoing RF Donbas offensive.
The UAF on Tuesday, July 5 continued its campaign of hitting RF munition depots by using either newly-delivered long-range artillery rockets or air strikes.
According to multiple news reports in both Ukrainian and RF-controlled media, US-manufactured rockets fired either by American HIMARS or M270 artillery systems struck an ammo storage and logistics site in the RF-occupied town of Makiyivka, triggering multiple explosions and setting fires.
A statement by the UAF air force claimed that in the last 24 hours two more RF ammunition dumps were destroyed in air strikes, but the report did not give details on their actual location.
Oleksiy Arestovych, an adviser to the Head of the Office of the President, said that ongoing UAF attacks against RF ammunition stores, combined with rising supplies of NATO-state provided artillery ammunition, is shifting the logistics balance along the Donbas front, forcing RF forces for the first time to conserve shells and artillery rockets.
Anton Pavlyuchenko, a military analyst with eight years of experience monitoring RF-UAF fighting trends, said that for the first time since Russia’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin is facing logistical problems on the fronts.
Writing in an article on the InformNalpam military news website, Pavlyuchenko said the UAF’s recent fielding of US-made long-range rocket artillery systems will prevent the RF from maintaining large supplies of ammunition near the fighting line, and, as long as supplies of NATO-standard ammunition and weapons continue, sooner or later this will give the UAF artillery superiority over the Russian army.
“In general, this is a completely new war…. Nothing will stop (the US-manufactured rocket artillery system) HIMARS, whose time has come. The Russians wanted to make war with NATO?” Pavlyuchenko wrote in part.
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