In the first major victory for Russian Forces since the annexation of the DPR and LPR regions of Southern Ukraine, the Kremlin announced the capture of Soledar town in DPR using a mix of regular soldiers and Wagner mercenaries.
Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said at a briefing Friday that taking full control over Soledar cuts off supply routes of Ukrainian troops in Artemovsk (Bakhmut).
He said that during the operation to take control of Soledar, a covert maneuver was made from another direction of the Russian Airborne Troops units. "In the course of the actions to liberate Soledar, the airborne units made a covert maneuver from another direction, successfully attacked the positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, occupying the dominant heights and blockaded the city from the north and south sides.”
Konashenkov claims more than 700 Ukrainian servicemen and over 300 units of weapons of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were destroyed near the city of Soledar in past three days.
He said that Russian troops concentrated in this area used electronic warfare systems to suppress the enemy's control system, and also disrupted the use of Ukrainian UAVs.
"The complex of measures implemented by the Russian group of troops ensured the successful offensive operations of the assault detachments to liberate Soledar," the official said.
He said that "the capture of Soledar became possible due to the constant fire destruction of the enemy by assault and army aviation, missile troops and artillery of a group of Russian troops (forces).”
"They continuously delivered concentrated attacks on the positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the city, forbidding the transfer of reserves, the supply of ammunition, as well as attempts to withdraw the enemy to other lines of defense," Konashenkov said.
According to him, fighter aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces "during the liberation of the city, three aircraft and a helicopter of the Ukrainian Air Force were destroyed, performing the tasks of providing air fire support to Ukrainian troops."
“In addition, the combat crews of the air defense systems of the group of Russian troops in the Soledar area shot down nine rockets of the HIMARS, Alder and Uragan multiple launch rocket systems, fired at strongholds occupied by Russian troops,” said the official representative of the Russian Defense Ministry.
Soledar is a city and administrative center in Donbass. Soledar is home to the production facilities of one of Europe's largest salt mines.