The Russo-Ukrainian War at a glance: What we know on the 322nd day of the invasion | UkraineThank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!
The head of the Russian mercenary group “Wagner” claims that his forces did it complete the takeover of the Ukrainian city solder, which, if confirmed, would mark Moscow’s first major battlefield success since last summer. “Wagner’s units took control of the entire territory of Soledar,” Yevgeny Prigozhin said in an audio message posted on his Telegram channel late Tuesday. Soledar, home to vast salt mines, has symbolic, military and commercial value for Russia.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Soledar’s “heroic” defenders but gave no update on the military situation in his Tuesday evening address.
Russian forces practiced tank, mortar and artillery fire on AvdiivkaUkraine’s armed forces said, a second focus for Russia south of Bakhmut and not far from the city of Donetsk, held by Russian proxies since 2014.
Russian artillery fire in Ukraine has dropped dramatically from its wartime high, in some places by as much as 75%, according to representatives of the United States and Ukraine. The decrease in shelling is further evidence of Russia’s increasingly weak position on the battlefield nearly a year after its invasion, officials told CNN. Officials did not provide a clear or unequivocal explanation behind the striking drop in artillery fire.
Western officials have warned that Ukraine will not be able to retake a significant amount of territory from Russia without increasing military capabilities, including tanks and armored vehicles. Russian and Ukrainian forces are currently too close for the Ukrainians to mount a major offensive, said a Western official in Tuesday. They said the reported Ukrainian call for 300 tanks was not an “unreasonable number” to create the attack force they needed.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday his government will buy a US air defense system to donate to Ukraine. The US-built air defense system cost C$406 million (US$302 million), Defense Minister Anita Anand said. “Canada will continue to support the Ukrainian people as they fight Russia’s illegal and unjustified invasion,” Anand said.
Ukrainian troops are ready to begin training on the Patriot missile system in the US as early as next week, US officials said. The training program will take place at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, with the program expected to take “several months,” one said. During Zelensky’s visit to the US in December, Joe Biden announced $1.85bn (£1.54bn) in new military aid to Kyiv, including the delivery of a Patriot missile battery system. The US is also reportedly considering sending Stryker armored fighting vehicles to Ukraine. The movement may be announced next week, but no final decision has been made, Politico reported, citing two sources familiar with the matter.
Russia appointed Colonel General Alexander Lapin as Chief of Staff of the country’s ground forcesreported the state news agency TASS, despite criticism from hawks about his performance in Ukraine.
The family of one of two Britons missing in Ukraine said they were “very worried and concerned” about his health. Chris Parry, 28, was last seen on Friday with fellow Briton Andrew Bagshaw, 48, on their way to the town of Soledar in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region. The men worked as volunteers helping people evacuate from the front line.
Reuters and Agence France-Presse contributed to this report
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