Ukraine: Russian fortifications in Kherson discussed by analyst
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Russia is very “worried” about a Ukrainian invasion south of the Dnipro river in Kherson while they are “light” on soldiers having sent many of them eastwards to Donbas, an expert has claimed. Defence and security analyst Professor Michael Clarke cited a map by the Institute for the Study of War, which was constructed using satellite imagery, to show that Russian forces are building scores of fortified bases to obstruct a Ukrainian advance in the south. Pointing to triangles on the map, which represent the fortifications, Professor Clarke showed that Russia is trying to “protect their lines of communication” down into Crimea.
Asked how Russia were faring in the ongoing battle for the Kherson region, Professor Clarke said: “Everywhere else they are digging in, and this is a really interesting map. This is done by the Institute for the Study of War.
“It is an excellent piece of research using satellite data. They have logged where the Russians are digging in on the east side of the Dnipro river.
“The Ukrainians took Kherson city [to the northwest] and all of these triangles represent fixed fortifications which the Russians have built. All the ‘Cs’ represent concentrations of troops and a barracks there. Another barracks here.
“What it shows us is that the Russians are really fortifying their side of the river opposite Kherson city but also here, this is Nova Kakhovka.
“The Russians really seem to expect the Ukrianians to cross the Dnipro river, probably around Nova Kakhovka.
“The other thing that is interesting is that you see how they have fortified all of their lines of communication.
“They obviously expect or worry that the Ukrainians will really try to invade, as it were, the other part of the [Kherson] Oblast and so they are protecting their lines of communication.
“They obviously think, I guess, they have taken so many troops away from Kherson to send to Donbas, that their forces here are relatively light, so they have got to have more fortifications.”
In the latest events of the war, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the deputy head of the Ukrainian president’s office, said Russian forces overnight fired on seven regions in Ukraine’s south and east, employing missiles, drones and heavy artillery.
Mr Tymoshenko said that as of Tuesday, power had been restored to 24 percent of residents in the recently liberated southern city of Kherson, but that fighting in the region was still rife.
A hospital in Kherson also came under fire from Russian forces stationed across the Dnipro River, without causing casualties or serious damage, he said.
One civilian was killed and three were injured in a Russian rocket attack on residential neighbourhoods in Lyman, an eastern city in Ukraine’s Donetsk region, Mr Tymoshenko added.
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Some 75 kilometres (47 miles) upstream from the city, Kremlin-installed authorities said shelling killed two civilians and injured two others Tuesday in Nova Kakhovka, another Kherson region city.
As a result of the attacks, the Moscow-backed officials have encouraged residents to evacuate deeper into Russian-held territory.
On the battlefields in eastern Ukraine’s Russia-annexed Luhansk region, Ukrainian forces were continuing a slow advance, pushing toward Russian defence lines set up between two key cities, Governor Serhiy Haidai said.
He acknowledged in televised remarks that the onset of winter was compounding a “difficult” military situation.
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