Over the past 48 hours not much has changed.
The airport is confirmed fully in Novorussians hands and the main combats are in the towns of Peski, Avdeevka, Krasnogorovka and Marinka which are shown in black on the map below:
In all these locations the Novorussian Armed Forces are on the offensive in order to push back the Ukrainian Repression Forces. If the Novorussian succeed in booting the Junta forces out of these cities they will have to operate an important retreat as the terrain behind these cities open steppes were the Ukrainian artillery cannot hide. In other words, if the Novorussians take these town the terror attacked on Donetsk will stop.
Gorlovka is still being hammered by the Ukrainian artillery which has resumed using cluster munitions.
The Novorussian artillery regularly conducts strikes against the outskirts of the city were the Ukrainians have dug in.
The big news of the day is political: Zakharchenko has declared that the Novorussians are done taking prisoners and that they have no more interest in prisoner exchanges (which exchanged Ukrainian prisoners not for Novorussian soldiers, but for random citizens, criminal and even mentally retarded people).
In the meantime, the Minister of Defense of the Donetsk Republic has declared that 597 bodies have been recovered from the Donetsk Airport and that more are under the rubble. Keep in mind that what the Ukrainians like to call a “brigade” is usually a battalion-size force, about 600-800 men. In other words, it is quite possible that the entire 93rd “Zhitomir” Brigade whose commander was taken prisoner by the Novorussians has basically ceased to exit.
I would argue that it is quite possible that the Ukrainian front might break down and that the Novorussians could liberate a good part of historical Novorussia.
As for Poroshenko, he still promises a unitary Ukraine, only one official language and a total war against the “terrorists”.
Regardless of the Kremlin’s efforts to cool down the situation, I don’t see any reason at all for the combats to stop. And since Voentorg is working at full capacity, there is a good chance that Moscow is still pretending that a negotiated solution can be found when, in reality, the Kremlin has already decided that no negotiated outcome is possible, at least not with the freaks currently in power in Kiev.
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