Very heavy fighting is taking place in and around the city of Avdiivka in eastern Ukraine.
According to Ukrainian military authorities, the Russians have intensified their attacks in recent days.
A few weeks ago, a Ukrainian soldier documented the tragic situation in the trenches in Avdiivka.
Ukrainian and Russian soldiers stand close to each other.
It is said that the occupation forces used bombs, missiles and more than 1,000 artillery shells in the recent battles.
Avdijivka is said to be almost surrounded by Russian forces.
Neither the Russian nor the Ukrainian authorities spoke about their losses. But on the Ukrainian side, 931 Russian soldiers were allegedly wounded or killed every day in November.
British Military Intelligence says these numbers are probable.
These are the highest numbers so far in the war. Earlier this year, the highest figure was supposed to be 776 killed and wounded every day in connection with battles near the town of Bakhmut.
A Norwegian military expert told NRK that the new figures may show a trend.
– The British figures seem credible, says Lieutenant Colonel Geir Hagen Carlsen of the Norwegian Defense Academy.
He believes that the British attach great importance to carefully examining information before publishing it. According to Carlsen, British intelligence was a good resource throughout the war.
A researcher at the Norwegian Foreign Policy Institute also told NRK that the development appears to be as the British described it.
“You always have to be careful about taking these numbers too literally, but the trend is that there is now an increase in Russian losses compared to before, I think we should probably be confident,” says researcher Carsten Friis at NUPI.
– High tolerance for loss
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said this week that Russia had built up a large stockpile of missiles ahead of the winter, and that there would be new attacks against power plants and infrastructure.
The NATO Secretary General believes that the Russians will try to leave Ukraine in the dark and the cold. He pointed out that the Russian leadership has a high tolerance for the loss of soldiers.
– We should not underestimate Russia. We have seen that President Putin has a high tolerance for loss. During his meeting with NATO foreign ministers, Stoltenberg stressed that they have so far lost 300,000 soldiers.
– Used by infantry soldiers
Researcher Carsten Friis says that the Russians are trying to besiege Avdiivka in order to control the city. This has been going on for several weeks.
– Things didn’t go well. He noted that they had made some progress, but there had been no progress. According to the researcher, the Russians used the same procedure as several other places.
It involves using foot soldiers or infantry to detect where Ukrainians are and where they are shooting from. This allows them to fire artillery shells at them.
-It is a very expensive method to operate. This is likely why the numbers are so high, says Ferris.
Lieutenant Colonel Geir Hagen Carlsen says the Russians are willing to take heavy losses.
“They try to seize territories in a very old-fashioned way by sending waves of soldiers, and they have little respect for human life,” the expert says.
He says this happens because the Russians are unable to carry out more advanced operations, they depend on simple people and consume people.
The way forward
This week, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba participated for the first time in a meeting in Brussels with his NATO colleagues. He was not keen on being asked questions by journalists about war fatigue in Western countries.
The Ukrainian authorities continue their efforts to liberate all the lands seized by the Russians.
– In my opinion, the most likely scenario is a long-term war of attrition, which has actually been going on since 2014, says Carlsen.
He does not believe that President Putin will negotiate peace as long as he is in power.
Ferris believes that the war will enter a calmer phase now that winter is coming with cold and darkness. It is believed that the Ukrainians will face more challenges because Western supplies of weapons and ammunition appear to be decreasing.
But Ferris asserts that one important outcome of the war will remain.
– Ukraine belongs to the Western community in the future. It is no longer an external country, but has become part of European politics, as the NUPI researcher emphasizes.
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