Russian forces have weakened their defences around Bakhmut and Ukrainian troops are a few miles away from the strategic city.
The British Ministry of Defence (MoD) has said that after Ukraine had recaptured Andriivka and Klishchiivka this has brought them closer to capturing the main supply route into Bakhmut.
However, Russian forces hold a railway line between the embankment and Klishchiivka and the T 05-13 road which is a “readily defendable obstacle,” the MoD said on Wednesday.
The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) has said that Ukrainian attacks have had “tactical success” which has left the Russians with “severe” damage.
Read more on Russia-Ukraine war:
The ISW said that the strategic defensive line was breached by Ukrainian forces and re-took the two villages leaving Russian troops likely being battle-weary from the recent efforts to hold Klishchiivka and Andriivka.”
In western Zaporizhia Oblast Russian forces had more than 300 killed in just one day, the ISW confirmed.
Russian forces are struggling to be “combat-effective” in the region which is one of the key areas of Ukraine’s counteroffensive.
Ukrainian military spokesman Colonel Oleksandr Shtupun said that Russia suffered 313 casualties near to the village of Tavariisk, on Monday.
Colonel Shtupun revealed that 200 Russian soldiers were killed in the area, which has been the scene of extreme fighting in recent weeks.
In the village of Robotyne Ukrainian troops have had significant success after breaking through Russia’s first line of defences.
This has enabled Ukrainian troops to advance on the strategic town of Melitopol which is a Russian logistics hub.
Ukrainian forces are attempting to take control of Russia’s land bridge with Crimea which will then enable them to capture Melitopol, but first they have to recapture the village of Tokmak.
The ISW said that the elite VDV airborne unit have been massively “degraded” after being hit wave by wave of Ukraine’s counteroffensive.
The Russian convict recruits known as “storm V units” are acting as a cover for the VDV if they need to retreat, the ISW said.
The ISW added, “‘Storm-Z’ detachments are often combat ineffective and will likely provide the Russian defense in western Zaporizhia Oblast with marginal combat power.”
They added, “Throughout the war, Russian commanders have attempted to regenerate the airborne forces as a highly mobile, striking force for offensive operations.
“Once again, they are being used as line infantry to augment over-stretched ground forces.”