Map of the war in Ukraine showing Russia's “confirmed gains” on three fronts

Russian forces are advancing at three key points along Ukraine's frozen frontline, according to the latest analysis by the Institute for the Study of War, as Kiev warns that stunning losses alone will not stop Moscow's war machine.

Thursday's update by the Institute for the Study of War noted confirmed Russian advances in front-line hotspots near the devastated city of Bakhmut in the Donetsk region, the besieged Ukrainian city of Avdiivka, also in Donetsk, and in the Donetsk-Zaporizhia Oblast border region, which this summer was in the border region. . The heart of Kyiv's offensive efforts.

“Positional clashes” continue along the 600-mile front, with both Russian and Ukrainian forces probing each other’s positions in pursuit of local gains, ISW wrote.

Newsweek Unable to independently verify the reports and contacted the Russian Ministry of Defense via email to request comment.

ISW map showing the battlefield in Donetsk Oblast

Ukraine moved from counter-offensive operations to a more defensive stance with the onset of winter. Meanwhile, Russian forces have launched new efforts to seize territory and reverse the meager gains made by Kiev's forces during a costly summer and fall of fighting.

Moscow forces advanced northwest of Bakhmut, with ISW pointing to geolocated footage posted on January 17 indicating a “marginal gain in the residential area of ​​northern Bohdanivka,” outside the devastated city that Russian units captured in May 2023 after months of devastation. fighting.

Ukrainian Ground Forces spokesman Lt. Colonel Volodymyr Vityu reported this week that Russian forces are intensifying their efforts around Bakhmut, as well as in the direction of Kubyansk in the Kharkiv region.

Elsewhere, Russian forces advanced southwest of Avdiivka, a fortified city that had long been a focal point for the Ukrainian army on the Donetsk front.

The settlement is located just outside Donetsk, which has been occupied by local separatists and their Russian sponsors since 2014. The city is the unofficial capital of the Donbass region, making it a key political and logistical target.

ISW map of the Russian advance on Donetsk-Zaporizhia
A map published by the Institute for the Study of War shows Russian attack areas in the Donetsk and Zaporizhia regions as of January 18, 2024.
Institute for the Study of War and AEI's Critical Threats Project

“Geolocated footage published on January 17 shows Russian forces attacking and taking control of an outpost east of Nevelsky,” the War Institute wrote, referring to a small settlement southwest of Avdiivka. Russian forces have been trying to surround the city for months.

ISW said fighting was continuing around Avdiivka, including the coke plant to the northwest, the industrial area to the southeast, near Severn to the west, and near Pervomaisky and Nevelsky to the southwest.

In the south, Russian units are advancing into territory briefly liberated by Ukrainian forces over the summer along the administrative border between the Donetsk and Zaporizhya regions.

“Geo-located footage published on January 18 shows that Russian forces have previously advanced marginally south-east of Revnopol,” the War Institute wrote.

Ukraine He recovered The destroyed village in June as its forces headed south from the Velika Novoselka region, hoping to penetrate the Russian-occupied “land bridge” linking Crimea to western Russia. The ultimate target of the attack from Velika Novoselka is believed to be the port city of Berdyansk.

Ukrainian forces train near the front line in Liman
This photo was taken of Ukrainian forces at a training range in eastern Ukraine on January 12, 2024. Russian forces are advancing at various points along the 600-mile front despite the onset of winter.
Kostyantin Librov/Lipkus/Getty Images