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Russo-Ukraine War - 26 March 2023 - Day 396

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A number of claims and counterclaims are being made on the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the ground and online. While GlobalSecurity.org takes utmost care to accurately report this news story, we cannot independently verify the authenticity of all statements, photos and videos.

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 since the start of March 2023, Russia has likely launched at least 71 Iranian-designed Shahed series one-way attack uncrewed aerial vehicle (OWA-UAVS) against targets across Ukraine.

These attacks followed a two-week pause in OWA-UAV attacks in late February 2023. Russia has likely started receiving regular resupplies of small numbers of Shahed OWA-UAVs.

Russia is likely launching Shaheds from two axes: from Russia's Krasnodar Krai in the east and from Bryansk Oblast in the north-east. This allows Russia flexibility to target a broad sector of Ukraine and decreases flying time to targets in the north of Ukraine. It is also likely to be a further attempt to stretch Ukrainian air defences.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that during the day of March 26, Russian forces launched 1x missile and 16x air strikes, over 10x MLRS attacks.

The likelihood of missile and air strikes across Ukraine remains high, as the Russian Federation continues to use its terror tactics.

Russia is focusing its main efforts on the offensive operations on Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Mar'inka axes. Thanks to professional and coordinated actions, Ukrainian defenders repelled more than 50x Russian attacks on these axes.

Volyn, Polissya, Sivershchyna, and Slobozhanshchyna axes: no significant changes in the operational situation, no signs of the formation of Russian offensive groups were found. The units of the armed forces of the of the Russian Federation continue their combat training at the training grounds of the Republic of Belarus. Russia continues to maintain military presence in the border areas of Kursk and Belgorod oblasts (russia). During the day of March 26, Russian forces shelled the vicinities of Novovasylivka, Bachivs'k, Atyns'ke, Volfyne, Myropil's'ke, Pokrovka, Popivka (Sumy oblast), Tymofiivka, Veterynarne, Hraniv, Kozacha Lopan', Hlyboke, Hatyshche, Kolodyazne, Dvorichna, Zapadne, and Kam'yanka (Kharkiv oblast).
Lyman axis: Russian forces conducted unsuccessful offensives in the vicinities of settlements of Syn'kivka and Vesele. The Russian invaders fired artillery at the vicinities of Kup'yans'k (Kharkiv oblast), Makiivka, Nevs'ke, Dibrova, Bilohorivka (Luhansk oblast), Kolodyazi, Lyman, and Vyimka (Donetsk oblast).
Bakhmut axis: Russia continues to assault the city of Bakhmut as well as in the vicinity of Ivanivske (Donetsk oblast). The Russian forces shelled the settlements of Vasyukivka, Bondarne, Zaliznyans'ke, Min'kivka, Novomarkove, Hryhorivka, Bakhmut, Ivanivske, Maiors'k, and New York.
Avdiivka and Mar'inka axes: Russia conducted offensive operations towards the settlements of Novokalynove, Avdiivka, Sjeverne, Pervomais'ke, and Mar'inka. None of them were successful. Novokalynove, Krasnohorivka, Kam'yanka, Avdiivka, Netaylove, Mar'inka, and Heorhiivka (Donetsk oblast) came under numerous Russian attacks.
Shakhtars'ke axis: during the day of March 26, Russian forces shelled the vicinities of Novomykhailivka, Vuhledar, and Velyka Novosilka (Donetsk oblast).
Zaporizhzhia and Kherson axes: Russia continues to defend. The occupiers shelled the settlements of Ol'hivs'ke, Malynivka, Hulyaipole, Novodanylivka, Novoandriivka (Zaporizhzhia oblast), Kherson, Zolota Balka, Mykhailivka, Beryslav, Vesele, Kozats'ke, Mykolaivka, L'vove, Antonivka, Blahovishchenske, and Dniprovs'ke (Kherson oblast).

The Russian invaders continue to suffer huge losses. This forces them to set up their hospitals on the territory of civilian medical facilities.

For example, Russian occupation forces use a local civilian hospital in the village of Novovasylivka (Pryazovs'kyi district, Zaporizhzhia oblast) as a military hospital. As of March 25, about 200x wounded russian invaders are being treated there. Civilians are denied access to the medical facility.

During the day of March 26, the Ukrainian Air Force launched 3x air strikes on the concentrations of Russian forces' personnel and military equipment. Missile and artillery units hit 3x Russian concentrations, 1x electronic warfare station, 1x Russian ammunition depot.

Statements of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation

The Russian Ministry of Defense reported that as a result of strikes on the positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, about 440 Ukrainian servicemen were destroyed during the day, as well as a large number of enemy military equipment. In the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) and Kharkiv region, 2 ammunition depots of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and territorial defense were destroyed.

Operational-tactical and army aviation, missile forces and artillery hit 84 artillery units, manpower and equipment of Ukrainian troops in 128 districts.

Fighter aviation of the Russian Aerospace Forces in the DPR shot down a Mi-8 helicopter of the Ukrainian Air Force. Air defense systems intercepted 7 shells of the HIMARS multiple launch rocket system, destroyed 14 Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles in the DPR, the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) and the Zaporozhye region.

Zaporozhye region

The refusal of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to demilitarize the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant is a glimmer of common sense, Vladimir Rogov, a member of the main council of the regional administration, believes. According to him, the IAEA is beginning to "sensibly assess the current situation" and stop echoing the instructions from Kyiv and Western countries. The official is sure that with any weakening of the ZNPP security regime, the Armed Forces of Ukraine would have made an attempt to force the Dnieper and capture the station and the city of Energodar.

Adviser to the Director General of Rosatom Renat Karchaa said that on March 29 the visit of the head of the IAEA to the ZNPP and the rotation of inspectors working at the facility should take place.

Kherson region

On the right bank of the Ingulets River near Snigirevka, Ukrainian troops are building long-term defensive lines, said Yury Barbashov, head of the Russian administration of the Snigirevka district. According to him, the Armed Forces of Ukraine will try to lure out Russian units in order to meet them on the high bank of the Ingulets. In an attempt to hide the movement of personnel, the Ukrainian security forces regularly turn on the air raid siren to drown out the rumble of equipment.

Residential buildings were damaged as a result of shelling by Ukrainian troops of the village of Aleshki on the left bank of the Dnieper, said the head of the local administration, Georgy Zhuravko.


During the day, the Armed Forces of Ukraine opened fire on Donetsk, Yasinovataya and Horlivka. As a result of attacks in Gorlovka, a private house was damaged, and the Lenin mine village was partially de-energized.

The head of the DPR government, Vitaly Khotsenko, said that the railway infrastructure and power supply of the seaport of Mariupol had been fully restored. The city is already accepting building materials, which are supplied by water for the repair of facilities in the republic.


During the day, Ukrainian troops opened fire on Lisichansk, firing 3 shells from a 155 mm artillery gun. As a result of the shelling, the building of a multidisciplinary hospital was damaged, as well as 2 residential buildings and a gas pipeline.

Russian forces have taken control of an apartment complex in the city's southwest. Russian forces have advanced south of the city and taken control of trenches Ukrainian forces have held since before the war escalated in February 2022.

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Page last modified: 26-03-2023 19:37:18 ZULU