Russia ‘increasingly unlikely’ to capture key city near Donetsk, UK says
Photo: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

Russia’s attempts to launch a massive attack on the city of Avdiivka, a Ukrainian stronghold in the Donetsk region, have so far been unsuccessful and are "increasingly likely" to yield no result, UK defence intelligence said on Tuesday.

In its latest update, the British intelligence says Russian forces in the Donetsk region are conducting a "combined arms offensive on the heavily defended town of Avdiivka, which has been on the front line since 2014".

"The town is a major obstacle in preventing Russian forces from their wider objective of taking control of the Donetsk region," the update reads.

While Russia is likely using multiple armoured battalions in an attempt to envelop Avdiivka, in what UK defence intelligence says is likely "the most significant offensive operation undertaken by Russia since at least January 2023," Ukrainian forces have held back the Russian advance, with the latter "sustaining heavy equipment and personnel losses".

"Slow progress and high casualties have likely triggered a change in messaging from Russia, from an offensive to 'active-defence’, as successfully clearing Avdiivka looks increasingly unlikely in the short term," it concludes.

The Russian army has intensified attacks in the area of Avdiivka in recent days, advancing with infantry and conducting massive air strikes.

According to the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the Russians are advancing with up to three battalions supported by tanks and armoured vehicles.