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Russo-Ukraine War - 12 May 2023 - Day 443

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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 on the night of 08-09 May 2023, the Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet vessels launched eight SS-N-30a SAGARIS land attack cruise missiles (LACMs) against Ukraine. This was only the second use of Russian Navy LACMs reported since 09 March 2023.

Up to March 2023, the Russian Navy frequently launched SAGARIS. Russia likely temporarily suspended using these weapons because it wanted to rebuild its reserve stocks. In the short-term, Russia likely sees LACM as a key capability to strike deep into Ukraine to disrupt anticipated Ukrainian counter-offensives.

However, more strategically, Russia also sees conventional SAGARIS and other LACMs as having an important role in any hypothetical conflict with NATO. How to use these scarce and expensive weapons is one of the numerous dilemmas Russian commanders face because the war in Ukraine has gone on much longer than they originally planned for.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that during the day, Russian forces launched 4x missile and 26x air strikes, and conducted more than 20x MLRS attacks that caused damage to civilian infrastructure. Russian forces again used the S-300 SAMs to attack Kramatorsk and Zaporizhzhia. The threat of missile and air strikes remains high across Ukraine.

Russia continues to concentrate its main efforts on Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiivka and Mar'inka axes. 36x attacks took place on the specified axes during the day. Bakhmut and Mar'inka remain at the epicenter of hostilities.
Volyn' and Polissya axes: operational situation has not changed significantly; there are no signs of the formation of attack groupings.
Sivershchyna and Slobozhanshchyna axes: Russia continues to maintain military presence in the areas bordering Ukraine. Volfyne (Sumy oblast); Chervona Zorya, Veterynarne, Hlyboke, Liptsi, Starytsia, Ohirtseve, Hatyshche, Vovchans'k, Nesterne, and Velikyi Burluk (Kharkiv oblast) came under mortar and artillery fire.
Kup'yans'k axis: Kam'ianka, Krasne Pershe, Mitrofanivka, Figolivka, Novomlynsk, Dvorichna, Zapadne, Kislivka, and Tabaivka (Kharkiv oblast) and Stelmakhivka (Luhansk oblast) were hit by Russian artillery and mortar fire during the day.
Lyman axis: Russian forces shelled various settlements along the contact line, including: Makiivka, Bilogorivka (Luhansk oblast); and Verkhn'okam'yans'ke and Spirne (Donetsk oblast).
Bakhmut axis: Russia continues to advance. The battle for Bakhmut continues. During the last day, Russian forces attempted to advance towards Orikhovo-Vasylivka, Hryhorivka, and Stupochki.
Russian occupiers carried out air strikes in the vicinities of Bohdanivka, Bakhmut and New York.
Fedorivka Druga, Orihovo-Vasylivka, Bohdanivka, Bakhmut, Ivanivs'ke, Chasiv Yar, Stupochki, Pivdenne, Torets'k, Druzhba, Sjeverne, and New York (Donetsk oblast) came under Russian fire.
Avdiivka axis: Russian forces carried out airstrikes in the vicinities of Avdiivka and Vodyane. Stepove, Avdiivka, Netaylove, and Pervomais'ke (Donetsk oblast) came under fire.
Mar'inka axis: Ukrainian Defense Forces repelled numerous Russian attacks in the vicinities of Mar'inka. Hostre, Heorghiivka, Maksimilianivka, Mar'inka, and Pobieda (Donetsk oblast) were subjects to Russian bombardment.
Shakhtars'ke axis: during the day, Russian forces did not conduct offensive operations. Russian aircraft delivered air strikes in the vicinities of Prechistivka and Velika Novosilka. Paraskoviivka, Kostyantynivka, Novomykhailivka, Vuhledar, Novoukrainka, and Prechistivka came under attack.
Zaporizhzhia and Kherson axes: Russian occupiers stayed on the defensive. Russian aircraft attacked Ukrainian positions in the vicinities of Novopil' (Donetsk oblast); Malynivka and Chervone (Zaporizhzhia oblast); as well as Kizomys (Kherson oblast).
Moreover, Russian occupiers shelled several Ukrainian settlements along the contact line, including: Vremivka and Novopil' (Donetsk oblast); Malynivka, Hulyaipole, Biloghirya, Novoandriivka, Novopavlivka, Mali Shcherbaki, and Kam'ians'ke (Zaporizhzhia oblast); Kozats'ke, Sadove, and Antonivka (Kherson oblast) and the city of Kherson.

In addition to replenishing units that have suffered losses, Russia makes efforts to generate new units. For instance, Russian military authorities have initiated formation of new motorized rifle brigade in Stavropol Kray (Southern Military District) to reinforce occupation forces operating in Ukraine. The vast majority of those who signed the contract have no motivation to participate in combat, while at the same time, the Russian invaders are eager to make money.

During the day, Ukrainian Air Force delivered 4x strikes on the concentrations of Russian troops and military equipment. Ukrainian missile and artillery troops attacked 3x concentrations of russian troops, 3x artillery systems, and 1x radio-electronic warfare station.

The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported that in Kupyansk direction, the attacks, launched by aviation, as well as the artillery of the Zapad Group of Forces, have resulted in the neutralisation of the enemy units close to Dvurechnoye (Kharkov region), and Novosyolovskoye (Lugansk People's Republic).

In addition, the actions of sabotage and reconnaissance group were suppressed close to Kotlyarovka (Kharkov region).

The enemy losses were over 60 Ukrainian servicemen, one armoured fighting vehicle, two motor vehicles, two Grad MLRS, one U.S.-manufactured M109 Paladin artillery system, and one Akatsiya self-propelled artillery system.

In Krasny Liman direction, the attacks, laucnhed by Operational-Tactical and Army aviation, as well as artillery of the Tsentr Group of Forces, have resulted in neutralisation of AFU manpower and hardware close to Torskoye (Donetsk People's Republic).

Two sabotage and reconnaissance groups have been eliminated close to Chervonaya Dibrova and Kremennaya (Lugansk People's Republic).

The enemy losses were over 75 Ukrainian servicemen, three armoured fighting vehicles, three pickup trucks, one Akatsiya self-propelled artillery system, and one D-20 howitzer.

In the western part of Artyomovsk, the assault units continued the offensive to capture the city neighbourhoods.

The Airborne Troops are supporting them and suppressing AFU attempts to counterattack on the flanks.

The aviation have made 9 sorties close to Artyomovsk. The Group's artillery have performed 64 firing missions.

Operational-Tactical and Army aviation, as well as artillery of the Yug Group of Forces inflicted a fire damage on the enemy units close to Chasov Yar and Bogdanovka (Donetsk People's Republic).

In Soledar tactical direction, the enemy carried out offensive actions along the entire line of contact stretching over 95 kilometres.

The AFU launched 26 attacks involving more than 1,000 servicemen, up to 40 tanks and other military and special-purpose equipment.

All the attacks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) have been repelled. There has been no breakthrough in the defence of Russian forces.

In Maloyilinovskoe direction, in order to improve the stability of the defence, units of the Yug Group of Forces have occupied the military line taking into account the advantageous conditions of Berkhovskoye reservoir.

The soldiers of the 4th and 200th motorised rifle brigades, Army aviation crews and other units of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation have shown their courage in repelling the enemy attacks.

The enemy losses were over 540 Ukrainian servicemen, eight tanks and more than 20 other armoured vehicles.

In Donetsk direction, the enemy losses were around 900 Ukrainian servicemen killed and wounded, more than 30 armoured vehicles, as well as seven motor vehicles, two D-30 howitzers and one U.K-manufactured L-118 howitzer.

Air defence facilities have shot down one AFU Su-27 fighter close to Chasov Yar (Donetsk People's Republic).

One artillery ammunition depot of 110th Mechanised Brigade of the AFU has been destroyed close to Avdeevka.

In South Donetsk and Zaporozhye directions, the aviation and artillery operations of the Vostok Group of Forces have resulted in the neutralisation of the AFU units near Vodyanoye and Ugledar (Donetsk People's Republic).

The enemy losses were up to 110 Ukrainian servicemen, one tank, two motor vehicles and one Gvozdika self-propelled artillery system.

In Kherson direction, the enemy losses were up to 40 Ukrainian servicemen, one armoured fighting vehicle, three motor vehicles and one Akatsiya self-propelled artillery system.

Operational-Tactical and Army aviation, and Artillery of the Russian Group of Forces have engaged 72 AFU artillery units, manpower, and hardware in 102 areas during the day.

One storage of fuel for AFU hardware has been destroyed near Zaporozhye.

One U.S.-manufactured AN/TPQ-36 counterbattery warfare radar has been destroyed near Borovaya (Kharkov region).

One Ukrainian Zoopark-1 reconnaissance and firing control radar system has been destroyed close to Nikopol (Dnepropetrovsk region).

Air defence facilities have intercepted three HIMARS and Uragan rocket-propelled projectiles.

Air defence facilities have shot down 25 Ukrainian UAVs close to Krivosheevka, Kremennaya (Luhansk People's Republic), Belogorovka, Avdeevka, Chasov Yar (Donetsk People's Republic), Kamenskoye, Tokmak, Pologi (Zaporozhye region), Golaya Pristan and Zburyevka (Kherson region).

In total, 422 airplanes, 230 helicopters, 4,099 unmanned aerial vehicles, 421 air defence missile systems, 9,108 tanks and other armoured fighting vehicles, 1,100 fighting vehicles equipped with MLRS, 4,796 field artillery guns and mortars, as well as 10,141 units of special military vehicles have been destroyed since the beginning of the special military operation.

Ukrainian forces have carried out a series of counterattacks recapturing some blocks within the city and expanding the buffer along the Khromove road.

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