FULL DISCLOSURE: Sourced from Russian State-Controlled Media
Southfront: Russia and the DPR troops are moving forward, coming closer to the realization of the two main goals of the special military operation: the denazification and demilitarization of Ukraine.
The Russian military is steadily destroying military facilities of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) and suppressing the main Ukrainian nationalist forces, including the Azov regiment blockaded in the city of Mariupol.
At the same time, the advance of Russian forces has almost stopped on the Donbass front lines. The Russian grouping to the north of Kharkiv risks being blockaded. The Ukrainian Army is set to wage war on Russian territory. And Russia’s efforts in the demilitarization of Ukraine are partially offset by military supplies provided by Kiev’s allies.
The regrouping and strengthening of positions by both sides has been going on in Eastern Ukraine for about 2 weeks. Both sides are preparing for the bloody battle for the Donbass.
Russian, DPR and LPR forces are preparing to encircle the most powerful AFU grouping of troops numbering up to 100 thousand servicemen. The AFU is also transferring all available forces to the eastern front in order to stop the Russian offensive.
So far, despite fierce fighting and heavy artillery fire in some areas, the front lines in the Donbas region remain almost frozen by positional battles.
From Izyum and Rubezhnoe to Popasnaya and Ugledar, the situation remains without noticeable changes. Unlike in Mariupol, where the remnants of the AFU, including the most ardent nationalist formations, are rapidly losing their positions.
On the night of April 12, the remnants of Ukrainian troops surrounded the territory of the Ilyich plant and attempted to escape from the city in the northern direction. According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, a group of Ukrainian servicemen numbering up to 100 people in armored vehicles tried to fight their way out of the factory. This breakthrough attempt was thwarted by airstrikes and artillery. Three Ukrainian tanks, five infantry fighting vehicles, seven vehicles, and up to 50 personnel were destroyed. Another 42 Ukrainian servicemen laid down their weapons and surrendered.
At the same time, while Moscow claims that almost no one managed to escape, DPR officials say that some of the Ukrainian soldiers managed to scatter around.
Nevertheless, such desperate attempts to get out of the encirclement indicate the hopelessness of the Armed Forces of Ukraine left in Mariupol.
On April 11, the Head of the DPR said that the port of Mariupol had come under the control of the republic.
In Mariupol, the last important point of defense of the AFU remains the territory of Azovstal. Some hotspots of resistance remain in the coastal areas and in the Ilyich plant.
Meanwhile, taking advantage of the tactical pause in the East of Ukraine, Zelensky gave the order to go on the offensive in the territory of Russia. A video was spread online showing the order to attack Russia’s Belgorod region being read to the Ukrainian nationalist battalion “Tornado”.
As a result, an increased level of terrorist danger has been declared in the regions of Russia adjacent to Ukraine.
An organized offensive by the Ukrainian Army against Russia at the moment seems unlikely. Nevertheless, the border regions of the Russian Federation are regularly suffering Ukrainian attacks.
On April 12, railway tracks were damaged in the border area of the Belgorod region.
On April 11, the village of Shabelskoye in Krasnodarskiy Kray was shelled by the AFU likely with Tochka-U ballistic missiles from Mariupol.
In the village of Tavrichesky in Crimea, a Ukrainian drone was shot down by Russian air defense forces.
A Ukrainian Bayraktar TB2 attack drone was destroyed off the coast of Crimea.
What was proclaimed to be a special military operation is close to turning into a prolonged full-fledged war in Europe. It seems that the only way to avoid this is a fast Russian ‘victory’ on the front lines. However, while the Kremlin claimed no clear vision of what the ‘end of the military operation’ means on the battlefield, as well as due to the efforts of the West, the Ukraine war is moving into an unending phase.