War in Ukraine. Vladimir Putin is preparing a new offensive. HEIs: two possible directions
The American Institute for the Study of War in its daily analysis writes about a new offensive by Russia to Ukraine. According to the institute, its target will most likely be the Luhansk or Donetsk regions.
ISW analysts believe that Vladimir Putin plans a new offensive for February – March. The institute has already written that Russia is preparing to conduct a decisive military operation within the next six months, which can be both offensive and defensive. The task of the Russian forces is to regain the initiative and end the series of operational successes of the Ukrainian troops, it was emphasized. The likely target of the new Russian offensive is the Luhansk region, which is indicated by the transfer of Russian troops to it – it now resembles a center. He adds that the Russians may also attack the area of Wuhledar in the Donetsk region. The ISW repeats its earlier assessment of the low probability of an attack by Russian forces from the territory Belarus.
Putin pardons convicts who enlisted in the war
On Friday, the Kremlin confirmed that Putin is issuing pre-emptive pardons to convicts who enlisted war in Ukrainemainly in the ranks of the mercenary Wagner Group, writes ISW. He adds that this practice could drive further prisoner war recruitment and possibly enable the Wagner Group to operate with greater impunity.
The American center draws attention to a journalistic investigation which confirmed that the Russian authorities are deporting children from the occupied Kherson region to an orphanage in Simferopol in the occupied Crimea. It was noted that the children were placed in an institution that had previously been known for ill-treatment, as reported by the official Russian media. The orphanage advertises itself as a place that educates children in the spirit of “patriotism and citizenship” and “awakens self-awareness as a citizen of multinational Russia.”
Main photo source: RUSSIAN DEFENSE MINISTRY/PAP/EPA
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