The Ukrainian authorities have said that the start of the counteroffensive “will not be announced” and they are urging for “silence.”
Ukrainian officials are asking their people not to share images of any footage of air defence systems shooting down Russian missiles.
The Ukrainian Ministry said on Telegram making reference the counteroffensive, “Plans love silence. There will be no announcement of the start.”
Russia has announced that the counteroffensive has started and is has been thwarted and they claim to have killed hundreds of Ukrainian troops in the region of Donetsk.
Moscow has claimed to have killed 250 Ukrainian troops, destroyed 21 fighting armoured vehicles and 16 tanks following a “large scale” assault at five points in the Donetsk region.
The Russian Ministry of Defense has announced that they believe a Major Offensive Operation by the Ukrainian Armed Forces has begun with Battles and Ukrainian Advances from the 23rd and 31st Separate-Mechanized Brigades of the Ukrainian Ground Force being reported earlier today… pic.twitter.com/CemfXomdsQ
— OSINTdefender (@sentdefender) June 4, 2023
Yevgeny Prigozhin the head of Wagner Group has said that Ukrainian forces are “regaining positions” in Bakhmut and he angrily blasted that this is a “disgrace” as thousands of his men died capturing the city which was then handed over to Russian forces.
The city of Bakhmut which has now strategic value for Moscow has cost Vladimir Putin dearly as there has been a high death toll as Russian troops were sent into the “meat grinder.”
Prigozhin has hit out at Moscow and claimed that Ukrainian troops have retaken the town of Berkhivka, north Bakhmut.
The commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, Oleksandr Syrskyisaid, said that his troops have continued to “move forward” near to Bakhmut.
The Russian defence ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said, “The enemy’s goal was to break through our defences in the most vulnerable, in its opinion, sector of the front.”
Konashenkov added, “The enemy did not achieve its tasks. It had no success.”
He then claimed that the much awaited “major offensive operation by the Ukrainian Armed Forces has begun.”
He said, “That they believe a Major Offensive Operation by the Ukrainian Armed Forces has begun with Battles and Ukrainian Advances from the 23rd and 31st Separate-Mechanized Brigades of the Ukrainian Ground Force being reported earlier today in 5-Sectors along the Front specifically near the Town of Novodarivka in the Zaporizhia Region and the Town of Neskuchne in the Southern Dontesk Region.
“In response the these Advances, Units from the Russian Eastern Military District are said to have conducted a Counter-Offensive along the Front during which the Towns were Recaptured and it is claimed that 250 Soldiers of the Ukrainian Military were Killed alongside 16 Tanks, 3 IFVs, and 21 AFVs.”
Military analyst Sean Bell provided his analysis and told Sky News, “It’s worth pointing out that the first phase of any offensive will also be quite slow because they have to actually encounter the first line of defence so until you break through those it can often be quite slow.”
He added, that there will also be a few more reasons.