Wagner Group about a possible “tactical pause”. Kiev continues to fight for Pakmut

oh The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) believes the private mercenary group is awaiting reinforcements from Russian troops. Conventional weapons before taking a back seat to combat.

“The growing number of Russian conventional forces in the area may indicate that Moscow intends to offset the culmination of the Wagner Group’s offensive operations in Bagmut with professional troops as much as possible,” ISW said on Twitter.

This Friday, Volodymyr Zelensky’s adviser reiterated it Kiev decided to fight for the ruined city of Pakmut. to degrade Russian units before an expected spring Ukrainian counteroffensive.

“Russia has changed tactics. It brought most of its trained army, most of its professional army, as well as private companies,” said Michaelo Podoliak in an interview with an Italian newspaper. La Stampa.

The aide’s comments are seen as the latest sign of a shift away from Kiev to continue to defend the eastern city of Baghmut, one of the bloodiest battles in the war unleashed by Moscow.

“Its objectives: reduce Russian troops as much as possible, focus on a few key battles, stop their offensive and focus their resources elsewhere for a spring counteroffensive. So Pakmut is useful today,” Podoliak said.

The Kremlin made Bagmut a prime target in the winter offensive, which included thousands of reservists and mercenaries. Moscow troops were able to capture the western part of the city and its surroundings. However, they failed to close a ring around Kiev’s forces.

By early March, Kiev appeared to be preparing to withdraw from its positions west of the region. However, this week the generals decided to reinforce troops in Bagmut and continue fighting.

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For Moscow, control of the city would be a step towards capturing the entire Ukrainian industrial region of the Donbass, which is considered extremely important.

Intense trench warfare is described as leading to extensive loss of human life on both sides. But Kiev’s decision to fight rather than back down is a signal that it believes Moscow’s losses are too bad.

Missiles in Moscow?

On Thursday, Russia launched an unprecedented attack across Ukraine that included six hypersonic Kinzel missiles, considered a superweapon, to which NATO has no response.

According to Reuters, Moscow has only a dozen Kinzel missiles.

Thursday’s attacks came three weeks after another large-scale Russian attack. Earlier, Moscow carried out similar attacks every week.

The three-week gap is seen by experts as a sign that Moscow is running out of missiles and waiting for weapons factories to produce them.

Ukrainian forces have been largely on the defensive since mid-November, having scored victories in the second half of 2022.

With the exception of Buckmutt, the Russian winter offensive was largely unsuccessful. Kiev is waiting for a boost in Western aid in the coming months to launch an offensive in the spring when the now muddy landscape dries up.

w/ agencies

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