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The Fight for Avdiivka

February 6, 2017 – International monitors say fighting in eastern Ukraine has abated, but in the frontline town of Avdiivka the effects of recent violence are being felt as strongly as ever.

February 28, 2017 – Toward the end of January, fighting in east Ukraine saw some of the highest combat deaths on the frontline, with more than 40 people dying in a two-week span. VICE News correspondent Jake Hanrahan went to the war torn industrial town of Avdiivka where the shelling has knocked out electricity and heating. The fighting has started to impact civilians living nearby in the city — at least six have been killed since January 29th.

February 17, 2023 – People still live in Avdiivka – a suburb of the temporarily occupied Donetsk. The area is not simply near the front line – it is part of it. Active hostilities do not cease in the entire region. Representatives of the local Ukrainian authorities have long changed civilian outfits for military uniforms and now actively supply the city’s remaining residents with humanitarian aid. Mainly older people remain there. What is the situation in the front line city – learn in the report by Olena Hramova.

March 20, 2023 – Day 390 – March 20 The freshest reports suggest that Russians immediately started moving in multiple directions at once, namely towards Novokalynove and Berdychi. In order to maintain the momentum of advancement and expand their bridgehead as fast as possible, Russian forces deployed a lot of tanks and armored vehicles to facilitate further movement of their infantry. Simultaneously, after retreating from Krasnohorivka, Ukrainian forces urgently engaged additional units to stabilize the front line. The extensive use of tanks by Russians has been noted already during the battles east of Krasnohorivka, so Ukrainians have deployed more mobile irregular formations to mitigate this problem.

One of the irregular units operating in the Donetsk direction is a unit of special operators, White Wolves. Two days before Russians launched another wave of assaults, White Wolves released a video showing how they destroyed 10 Russian tanks during the night in order to undermine the ability of Russians to penetrate Ukrainian defenses. As a result, the Ukrainian General Staff reported that the Russian attack on Novokalynove was repelled. If we look at the topographic map, we can see that Russians control two important hills north of Krasnohorivka, while Ukrainians are located in the lowlands, so Russians have a tactical advantage in this regard.

However, because of the scattered farmland facilities, small lakes, and ravines, breaking through Ukrainian defenses here proved to be too difficult. Russian forces also increased the intensity of their attacks to the south of Avdiivka. Here, Russian forces have been struggling for a long time to breach the Ukrainian defense in front of Vodiane. Geolocated footage shows that recently Russian tanks tried to move around and assault Ukrainians from the flanks. Ukrainian 35th Marine Brigade timely spotted the attackers and destroyed several Russian tanks and armored vehicles. Ukrainian 53rd Mechanized Brigaded also reported about Russian advances to the south of Avdiivka, more specifically from Opytne.

This time Russian forces were more successful, and despite the best Ukrainian efforts, managed to breach Ukrainian defenses and got closer to the city itself. However, it seems like the engagement of so much armor in the south was just to immobilize Ukrainian troops before their main attack. After Russian forces in the south successfully drew Ukrainian attention to this region and in some places like Opytne managed to entangle Ukrainians in positional fights, Russian forces in Krasnohorivka made another push and achieved the most significant results in the most unexpected area. Today it was reported that Russian forces conducted a heavy mechanized assault on Stepove.

Some sources reported that Russians managed to cross the railways and establish partial control over the village. Right now, Ukrainians are urgently relocating troops to Berdychi. Some Russian sources have already confirmed that one Ukrainian tank unit has already arrived in Stepove to push Russians out. If we look at the topographic map, we can see that Ukrainians are controlling an artificial hill, which should give them a lot of control over the surrounding area. The fact that Russians have to maintain positions on the other side of the railway embankment complicates the situation for Russians even more and makes it extremely unstable.

This means that Russians will either shortly make an even bigger mechanized assault with the goal of taking not only Stepove but also Berdychi, or they will be completely destroyed. Overall, substantial reinforcements of the Russian forces in the Adviivka direction allowed Russians to open multiple lines of attack along the whole front line, fix Ukrainian troops in low-priority directions and generate a breakthrough to the north of Avdiivka. So far, Ukrainians seem to be doing everything they can – they mine the areas of advance, and they engage a lot of drones, artillery, and aviation. The number of tanks and armored vehicles engaged over the last week reminds us of what we saw in Vuhledar. Russians are trying to encircle Avdiivka as fast as possible, so if Ukrainians manage to slow them down enough, then Russians may once again run out of armor and troops before they secure crucial gains.

March 21, 2023 – Ukraine has said that the eastern town of Avdiivka could soon become a “second Bakhmut”. Russia has launched an assault on Avdiivka, seeking to kick-start its spring offensive that Ukraine claimed was on the verge of fizzling out. Kyiv has said that its forces have held out against Russian invaders in Avdiivka for eight months but risk being fully encircled. UK’s Defence Ministry said that the tactical parallels between Bakhmut and Avdiivka are very similar. The Russian army has been trying to conquer Avdiivka since 2014 when fighting broke out between Kyiv and Kremlin-backed separatists. Watch this video to know why Avdiivka is important for Russia’s war in Donbas and how Ukraine is defending the city.

March 22, 2023 – Despite relentless barrage of Russian shelling, about 2,000 civilians have remained in the frontline town of Avdiivka in eastern Ukraine’s Donbas region. The population of the town before the Russian invasion stood at around 25,000 people, according to local police chief. Those who stayed behind include 11 children, after one teenage boy, Oleksii Mazurin, 15, was evacuated with his mother on Friday. 15-year-old Oleksii Mazurina lived with his family in a basement since April last year because their apartment was burnt down after an airstrike. His mother Svitlana Mazurina decided to evacuate because she was worried about her son.

March 23, 2023 – Residents who have remained in the eastern Ukrainian city of Avdiyivka are now deciding to move somewhere safer as danger grows. The badly battered municipality has seen growing Russian artillery shelling as the enemy makes small gains in areas around Avdiyivka.

March 24, 2023 – Russian and Ukrainian troops continue to fight fierce and deadly battles in eastern Ukraine. Bakhmut is the city that’s come to symbolize slow-moving battles at high human cost. But there is another frontline town in eastern Ukraine, that is also home to crucial Ukrainian resistance. That city is Avdiivka. It’s almost completely encircled by Russian forces. Much like Bakhmut to the north.

October 21, 2023 – In recent days, some of the hottest clashes on the front line have been taking place in the vicinity of Avdiivka. Russian invaders are trying to surround the city, but Ukrainian soldiers are repelling enemy attacks.

October 22, 2023 – Russia’s Air Force just experienced their worst week of the war experiencing staggering losses of planes and helicopters. The Russians continue their insane assaults on Avdiivka with almost no progress to show after taking thousands of casualties in the last ten days. Putin is being told by his generals that “everything is going to plan” as Putin prefers being lied to instead of hearing the truth.

October 24, 2023 – Rumors are circulating online that Putin sustained a heart attack yesterday, but the only source of this information is a Telegram channel and no Western intelligence agencies can confirm this. Russian assaults on Avdiivka have almost been going on every day for two weeks now as observers are shocked by the horrendous rate of losses the regular Russian military is willing to sustain to try and advance. It looks like Sweden’s NATO membership will finally be approved by Turkey.

October 25, 2023 – Russians sacrificed 5000 men in Avdiivka – Ukrainian war update – we unleashed Ukrainian kamikaze drones!

November 12, 2023 – Ukraine celebrated the one-year anniversary of the liberation of Kherson and reviewing the joyous pictures and videos only painfully reminds us how many more Ukrainian civilians remain under Russian occupation. Ukraine’s energy minister claims that if Russia once again starts attacking their energy infrastructure, then Ukraine will start targeting Russia’s energy export infrastructure. Russian soldiers complain about their commander executing one of their own for being offended while Kremlin state TV continues to broadcast an alternate reality of the world.

November 16, 2023 – Putin has yet to announce his re-election campaign as he puts more pressure on his military to achieve some kind of tangible victory on the battlefield before he gives his speech to the nation. The US House went into recess for two weeks, but Ukraine is signaling that they are now confident that strong future military assistance from the United States will continue with a possible vote on another aid package coming in December. Ukraine continues to export their civilian grain out through the Black Sea, and this should be celebrated as a huge military victory as Russia cannot enforce a blockade.