NewsRussian forces repositioned near Kharkiv, Chechen roles unclear

Russian forces repositioned near Kharkiv, Chechen roles unclear

Apti Alaudinow, a Chechen commander, listed in the American registry of war criminals from the Russo-Ukrainian war, has been sent with his units to the Kharkiv region.
Apti Alaudinow, a Chechen commander, listed in the American registry of war criminals from the Russo-Ukrainian war, has been sent with his units to the Kharkiv region.
Images source: © Getty Images

7:34 AM EDT, June 9, 2024

Russian military command has moved Russian special forces to the Ukrainian-Russian border near the Kharkiv region. Experts from the USA are analyzing Putin's army's actions and assess that they may be a plan for an intensified assault. The dispatch of Chechen volunteers to that region is puzzling.

The Institute for the Study of War, a Washington think tank that reports detailed movements of Russian troops daily, reported the latest movements on the front in Ukraine. Among others, Chechen "volunteers" have been noticed in the Kharkiv region.

The appearance of units under the command of Chechen commander, Major General and assistant to Akhmat Kadyrov, Apti Alaudinov, who has led Chechen fighters since March 2022 and coordinated actions related to consolidating occupied territories in settlements of the Luhansk region, is intriguing analysts. There is speculation that it may be some planned action in which the Chechens will play a unique role.

As suggested by Americans, the Russian military command may be planning a military solid strike on Ukrainian forces. Russian Northern Forces have been conducting offensive operations in the Kharkiv region since May 10.

According to the ISW, a Russian milblogger stated on June 6 that the Russian military command has engaged about 15,000 soldiers there. "But it is unclear if the Russian military command plans to immediately commit these redeployed forces to combat or use them to reinforce the Northern Grouping of Forces to bring it closer to its reported planned end strength," reports the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).

The latest situation on the front in Ukraine. Americans report

The Ukrainian Korchitsa Group of Forces spokesperson, Lieutenant Colonel Nazar Voloshyn, commented on these reports. According to him, Alaudinov's units specialize in "blocking" actions. These are units that implement a specific Russian war technique. They shell allies who decide to retreat and flee during intense warfare.

As ISW experts comment, it is possible that the Russian military command moved Chechens to this region solely for this purpose and not for offensive actions. Voloshyn also stated that the Russian army command probably intends to deploy airborne units and elements of the 11th and 44th Corps of the Leningrad Military District for offensive actions.

On Saturday, military observer Kostantyn Maszowiec reported that each Russian operational grouping is replenished every month with a unit of around 1,000-1,500 soldiers. Supporting six operational Russian groups on the front requires 6,000-12,000 people. This is still possible as Russia recruits 30,000 conscripts monthly.

ISW has observed in recent months a "pulsing" of Russian offensive operations on the front, during which Russian forces alternately intensify attacks and decrease operational tempo to replenish losses. As experts comment, this constant influx of new forces may impact the "regeneration" of Russian ranks, but these won't be adequately trained and equipped units.

Therefore, it is possible that these fresh forces will be thrown back into the front and forced to make superhuman efforts. The Chechen "escort" is supposed to have a chilling effect, discouraging retreat and flight to the rear, forcing soldiers to make a deadly sacrifice in battle.

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