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The advancement of the Armed Forces is a Ukrainian military phenomenon – Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine

Ukrainian defenders continue active offensive operations in the east and south of Ukraine, despite the superior firepower and larger numbers of Russian troops. In total, almost 250 km2 of Ukrainian territories have been liberated from Russian occupation since the start of this phase of the counteroffensive.

The work of the Ukrainian artillery.
Photo: 80th Separate Airborne Assault Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

“Our Armed Forces are currently doing things that can confidently be called a military miracle. There are certain established rules in military science, which are built on experience. It says that you should launch an offensive when you have an advantage in weaponry and the number of people,” stated Hanna Maliar, Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine. “Our troops are advancing when the enemy has more military personnel and weapons (…) And here, the question is not about kilometers but about advancing in general (…) The fact that they (Armed Forces of Ukraine – ed.) are advancing both in the east and the south is practically a Ukrainian military phenomenon.”

According to Maliar, Ukrainian defenders continue to advance on the Bakhmut axis. In the past week, Ukrainian forces took back approximately 2 km2, expanding the total liberated area on the Bakhmut axis to 37 km2. In particular, on July 28, Ukrainian troops reported about the liberation of Staromaiorske settlement in the Donetsk region.

Russia, in its turn, kept trying to gain full control of the settlement of Marinka and surround the settlement of Avdiivka. However, the Russian forces did not succeed.

In the south of Ukraine, the Armed Forces of Ukraine continued their offensive operations on the Melitopol and Berdiansk axes. Particularly, near Mala Tokmachka in the Zaporizhzhia region, Ukrainian defenders had success and are consolidating their positions along the achieved frontlines. During the past week, the Ukrainian military took back an additional 12,6 km2 of Ukrainian territory, bringing the total liberated area in the south of Ukraine to 204,7 km2.

A Ukrainian artilleryman on the frontline near Bakhmut in the Donetsk region. July 15, 2023.
Photo: Anatolii Stepanov / AFP / Getty Images

The frontline in the east and south of Ukraine is currently more than 1,000 kilometers long. “Regarding the length of the so-called “hot” frontline, it now exceeds 1,200 kilometers. We are talking here about the frontline in the Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk, Luhansk, and Kharkiv regions, where active combat operations are ongoing,” stated Oleksii Hromov, Deputy Head of the Main Operational Directorate of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

And that is just the “hot” frontline: Hromov also reminded about the northern Ukrainian borders with Belarus and Russia, which carry the danger of constant missile and artillery attacks in addition to enemy sabotage and the activity of reconnaissance forces. There also remains a threat of another Russian military invasion from this direction. 

In addition, the Deputy Head of the Main Operational Directorate mentioned seaside territories in the Odesa and Mykolaiv regions, where, despite the reduction in the enemy’s naval potential, the landing possibility cannot be completely dismissed.