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EDF colonel: Russian troops have initiative on front line

Col. Tarmo Kindla.
Col. Tarmo Kindla. Source: ERR

Over the past week, Russian troops have managed to take small areas of land and hold the initiative in Ukraine, according to Col. Tarmo Kundla, head of the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) General Staff's ops department.

Over the past week, while there have been battles across the front line in Ukraine, the points of contact have been on the decline, Col. Kundla said. While a week before, the number of daily points of contact ranged from 70 to 120, last week it was between 50 and 60.

Despite this, Russian forces have still managed to gain some ground with small-scale attacks and maintain the initiative, Col. Kundla said at the Estonian Ministry of Defense's Friday press conference. "The main thrust is likely to be on the encirclement of Avdiivka and so it can be expected that additional resources will be deployed there in the near future," he added.

Russian forces have made small gains on the Kupyansk-Kreminna line, and have also captured some small villages near Bakhmut. They have  also managed to take some small areas in the Donetsk region.

On the southern front, however, the Ukrainians have managed to liberate areas in settlements close to Velyka Novosilka, Col. Kundla noted. In the eastern part of Kherson Oblast, where fighting also continues, there has been little change over the last week.

Col. Kundla added that despite some successes, Russian forces have not been able to make any decisive breakthroughs. "Ukraine's defense is holding," he said.

And while Russia has been firing particularly intensively on Ukrainian settlements over the last two weeks, with an average of over 100 strikes a day, these attacks have not weakened the Ukrainians' defenses, with their air defenses in particular having done a good job.

However, the Ukrainians would be able to defend themselves even more affectively if they had the technology to destroy the platforms from which Russia's air strikes are being carried out, the EDF colonel said.

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Editor: Michael Cole

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