Footage shows dozens of charred or abandoned vehicles, including tanks, in the woods and on the track leading to the river
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Ukrainian forces prevented an attempted crossing of the Russian river by Russian troops in Donbass, the British military said in an intelligence update.
The river involved was the Siversky Donets in Bilohorivka in Luhansky Oblast, the region’s governor said. The Siverskyi Donets runs through Kharkiv and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine.
Images tweeted by Ukraine’s Strategic Communications Directorate appeared to show several burnt-out military vehicles and segments of a bridge partially submerged in the river. Images showed many other damaged or abandoned vehicles, including tanks, in the woods and on the track leading to the river.
“The gunners of the 17th tank brigade of the #UAarmy opened the holiday season for (the Russian forces),” the ministry wrote on Twitter. “Some bathed in the Siverskyi Donets River, and some were scorched by the May sun.”
Ukrainian forces foil a Russian armored column crossing the river
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The UK called the crossings in a contested environment “a very risky maneuver and a testament to the pressure on Russian commanders to make progress in their operations in eastern Ukraine”.
The meandering river, made up of marshy wetlands and oxbow lakes, is a “nightmare” for a military member to cross, CNN reports. Russian troops have managed to cross the river further west, but it is not yet clear whether this is sustainable in larger numbers, the outlet reports.
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Ukrainian advances near Kharkiv could place some of Russia’s main supply lines to eastern Ukraine across the river within range of Ukrainian artillery, and even the allow assembly areas inside Russia to be bombed.
Russian forces may abandon efforts for a ‘broad encirclement’ of Ukrainian troops along the Izyum-Sloviansk-Debaltseve line in favor of shallower encirclements of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk, according to US-based analysts at the Institute. for the study of war. Both towns are part of Moscow’s main assault on the eastern Donbass region and close to the location of the failed river crossing.
Additional National Post and Reuters reports