Ukraine’s offensives in the south and north, an overview of events (Maps)
Over the last few days, Ukraine’s armed forces have simultaneously intensified its offensive in two directions: Luhansk and Kherson. With Russia’s attempts to stabilise the front line not yielding any results, Russian troops are retreating from many settlements in the north and south of Ukraine.
The North of Luhansk region
Along with the offensive on Kreminna in Luhansk region, Ukrainian troops continue to advance from the very north, near Kupiansk in Kharkiv towards Svatove, and expand the bridgehead near Dvorichna.
Ukrainian and foreign military analysts report that Russian troops are trying to "stabilise" the front line along the Kreminna - Svatove - Nova Tarasivka - Topoli border, most likely using natural terrain: rivers and hills.
At the same time, Russian "bloggers" report that the line of defence between Svatove and Kreminna will stretch along the road connecting these two towns, and that Russian forces are now hastily trying to build fortifications there.
Currently, the road between Svatove and Kreminna is already being targeted by the Ukrainian artillery. Ukrainian special operations forces are also working along the way.
However, the defence line is being built in a hurry – Russian forces did not have positions prepared in advance here given that these areas were considered "deep rear" for a long time.
The breakthrough of Ukrainian troops or the loss of any settlement along this line will indicate the collapse of Russia’s defence. The Russian army will have to withdraw to Starobilsk.
Ukrainian troops are now advancing towards Kreminna, trying to cut the town off from the supply lines in the northern direction. However, it may be more difficult to achieve compared to Lyman because there is a direct road connection between Starobilsk and Kreminna.
Ukraine’s military are using the siege tactics: infiltrating between the enemy's strongholds, surrounding and then destroying them. If the elimination is not possible at once, they keep the siege until these resistance fighters find themselves in the deep rear of the Ukrainian forces. The exhaustion strategy is being applied in a similar way to how it was used to recapture Lyman. Due to the lack of manpower, the Russian army cannot effectively counteract.
The North of Kherson region
Over the past few days, Ukrainian troops have also stepped up their offensive in the north of the Kherson region and achieved considerable success.
First of all, the Armed Forces of Ukraine advanced for more than 20 kilometres along the Dnipro river and liberated Zolota Balka, Dudchany and several smaller settlements in between.
On the other hand, on 4 October, Ukrainian troops liberated several settlements on the bank of the Ingulets river: Arkhanhelske, Velyka and Mala Oleksandrivka, Davydiv Brid. This has enabled Ukraine’s forces to connect the bridgehead near Sukhyi Stavok.
The "military correspondents" on the Russian telegram channels share information that the Russian troops are also retreating from "Kryvyi Rih bridgehead" – the occupied part of the Kherson region to the northeast of the Davydiv Brid - Beryslav road. According to them, Russian troops are retreating in order to "consolidate the defence".
Currently, we know about the liberation of Novomykolayivka. The territory north of Nova Kuban is currently in the "fog of war", so it is impossible to comprehensively understand what exactly is happening there.
Russian troops risk being surrounded if they do not leave these territories. The occupiers will likely try to gain a foothold at the Snihurivka - Stepove - Mylove border on the banks of the Dnipro river to protect Beryslav and Nova Kakhovka in that way.
The weather in the recent days has also played an important role contributing to the success of Ukraine’s southern offensive. The low-hanging clouds did not allow the Russian forces to actively use UAVs to gain an advantage in artillery.
On the other hand, Ukrainian troops in small raiding groups have managed to infiltrate between the Russian strongholds, reaching their rear and destroying the unprotected locations and the artillery positions.