Russo-Ukraine War - 31 December 2022 - Day 311
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On 24 February 2022, Ukraine was suddenly and deliberately attacked by land, naval and air forces of Russia, igniting the largest European war since the Great Patriotic War. Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a "special military operation" (SVO - spetsialnaya voennaya operatsiya) in Ukraine in response to the appeal of the leaders of the "Donbass republics" for help. That attack is a blatant violation of the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine. Putin stressed that Moscow's goal is the demilitarization and denazification of the country. The military buildup in preceeding months makes it obvious that the unprovoked and dastardly Russian attack was deliberately planned long in advance. During the intervening time, the Russian government had deliberately sought to deceive the world by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
"To initiate a war of aggression... is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." [Judgment of the International Military Tribunal]
The UK Ministry of Defence reported that on 29 December 2022, Russian forces launched another wave of long-range strikes across Ukraine, once again primarily targeting the power distribution network. Since October, Russia has sustained a general pattern of conducting an intensive wave of strikes every seven to ten days.
Russia is almost certainly following this approach in an attempt to overwhelm Ukrainian air defences. However, there is a realistic possibility that Russia will break this pattern to strike again in the coming days in an effort to undermine the morale of the Ukrainian population over the new year holiday period.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that in the period from 12:40 to 14:30, Russian forces launched a massive rocket attack. According to preliminary data, a total of about 20 rocket launches were carried out. Several of them did not reach Ukraine and fell on the territory of the Russian Federation (information is being clarified). The forces and means of air defense of the Air Force destroyed 12 cruise missiles in Kyiv, Zhytomyr and Khmelnytskyi oblasts. Also, in the Kyiv oblast, a Russian UAV "Orlan-10" was shot down, which was conducting aerial reconnaissance during a missile attack and was trying to identify the positions of Ukrainian air defense.
In addition, the Russian occupiers conducted 12 MLRS attacks, in particular, on the infrastructure of settlements in Donetsk and Kherson oblasts.
The threat of Russian air and missile strikes remains on the entire territory of Ukraine.
Russia does not stop offensive actions in the Lyman and Bakhmut areas and makes attempts to improve the tactical position in the Kupyansk and Avdiivka directions.
No signs of the formation of Russian offensive groups were detected in the Volyn, Polissya, Siverskyi and Slobozhanskyi directions.
On the Siverskyi and Slobozhanskyi directions, areas of the settlements of Khodyne, Atynske, Velyka Rybytsia, Zapsillia and Ryasne of the Sumy oblast and Uda, Strilecha, Alisivka, Krasne, Staritsya, Gatyshche, Vovchansk, Ternova and Katerynivka in the Kharkiv oblast were subjected to artillery and mortar shelling.
In the Kupyansk direction, Russian forces shelled the areas of the settlements of Lozova Persha, Zapadne, Masyutivka, Tokarivka, Kupyansk and Orlyanske in the Kharkiv oblast and Novoselivske, Stelmakhivka and Andriivka in the Luhansk oblast.
In the Lyman direction, Ploshanka, Makiivka, Nevske, and Dibrova in the Luhansk oblast, as well as Chervonopopivka, Terny, and Torske in the Donetsk oblast came under the influence of fire.
In the Bakhmut direction, Russian shelling was recorded in the areas of more than 20 settlements. Among them are Spirne, Soledar, Bakhmutske, Bakhmut, Kostyantynivka, Kurdyumivka, Mayorsk and New York of the Donetsk oblast.
Vesele, Avdiivka, Nevelske, Maryinka, Krasnohorivka, and Novomykhailivka in Donetsk oblast were shelled in the Avdiivka direction.
Vremivka, Velyka Novosilka, Prechystivka, Vuhledar, and Mykilske of the Donetsk oblast came under Russian fire in the Novopavlivsk direction.
In the Zaporizhzhia direction, Russian forces fired tanks, mortars and barrel artillery in the areas of more than 15 settlements. Among them are Olhivske, Hulyaipole, Stepove, Charivne and Dorozhnyanka of the Zaporizhzhia oblast.
In the Kherson direction, the civilian infrastructure of the settlements of Antonivka, Tokarivka, Mykolaivka, and Kherson suffered from shelling.
The Russian occupying forces strengthened the administrative and police regime for the period of the New Year holidays in some settlements of the temporarily occupied territory. So, from December 31, 2022 to January 6, 2023, the city of Henichesk in the Kherson oblast was closed to the public, and residents of the surrounding villages were also prohibited from leaving.
In order to install a system of engineering barriers in the temporarily occupied and occupied territories of Donetsk, Luhansk and Kherson oblasts, the Russian occupiers are recruiting civilians from the territory of the Russian Federation.
Ukrainian aviation struck 6 areas of concentration of the invaders and 1 strike at the positions of the Russian forces' anti-aircraft missile systems, and Ukrainian units of missile troops and artillery struck 2 areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment and the control point of the Russian invaders.
Statements of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu congratulated the military on the upcoming New Year and thanked them for their courage and heroism in the course of their military duty. The head of the department wished them good health, fortitude, reliable and devoted comrades, as well as clear skies. The coming year, according to Shoigu, is a symbol of hope for a peaceful future.
"Our Victory, like the New Year, is inevitable!" - said the minister.
The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported on the defeat of units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Kupyansky, Limansky, Donetsk and South-Donetsk directions. About 320 Ukrainian servicemen, 5 tanks, 3 infantry fighting vehicles, 2 armored personnel carriers, 15 armored vehicles, 15 pickups were destroyed.
In the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR), 3 points of temporary deployment of foreign mercenaries of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were hit by high-precision weapons.
Rocket troops and artillery hit 75 artillery units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, manpower and military equipment in 92 districts. In the DPR, the S-300 anti-aircraft missile system radar, 5 AN/TPQ-50 counter-battery radars, HIMARS multiple launch rocket launcher, 2 Grad MLRS combat vehicles, 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzer, 4 US-made M777 artillery systems. In the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR), a Czech-made Dana howitzer was destroyed.
In the DPR and the Zaporozhye region, 2 warehouses of weapons and ammunition of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were destroyed. In addition, the settlement of Dorozhnyanka was liberated in the Zaporozhye region.
Aviation of the Russian Aerospace Forces shot down 2 Mi-8 helicopters of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 8 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles were destroyed by means of air defense.
As part of a new round of prisoner exchanges, 82 servicemen of the RF Armed Forces were returned to Russia. Military transport aircraft will deliver all those released to Moscow for treatment and rehabilitation. Now they are receiving the necessary medical and psychological assistance.
Ukrainian troops launched an artillery strike on a TV and radio transmission tower in the city of Tokmak. As a result of the attack, the object was damaged.
In December, police officers detained 10 people in the Kherson region suspected of aiding the Armed Forces of Ukraine. This was reported in the Telegram channel of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for the region.
From the beginning of the day on December 31, Ukrainian troops opened fire on Donetsk, as well as the settlements of Makeevka, Gorlovka, Yasinovataya and Golmovsky. In Donetsk, as a result of attacks, 2 civilians were injured, damage to residential buildings was recorded.
In the LPR, Pervomaisk was shelled by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to FAN military correspondents, Ukrainian troops attacked the hospital building. The mayor of the city, Sergei Kolyagin, said that at least 2 people were injured as a result of the attack. At the same time, it is known that the car of the mayor himself also came under fire.
Acting head of the LPR Leonid Pasechnik said that thanks to the patronage of Russia, the cities and regions of the republic have almost completely completed the recovery plan for 2022. He noted that new roads are being built on the territory of the LPR, bridges, hospitals, schools and kindergartens are being restored.
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