(FILE)- Flowers are seen in front of a damaged residential building on a shelled street in Avdiivka settlement near a frontline in Donetsk region, Ukraine, 28 August 2023, amid Russia's ongoing invasion. EFE/EPA/ALEX BABENKO

Ukraine suffers biggest Russian attack as it prepares for another assault on Avdiivka

Moscow/Kiev, Nov 1 (EFE). – In the last 24 hours, Ukraine has suffered the biggest Russian attack so far, with bombings recorded in 118 locations, as it prepares to repel the third Russian assault on the eastern city of Avdiivka, which could decide the fate of this Ukrainian bastion.

“Over the past 24 hours, the enemy has shelled 118 localities in ten regions,” Ukrainian Interior Minister Igor Klimenko said in a message posted on social media.

“This is the largest number of towns and villages to suffer an attack since the start of the year,” he added.

The minister spoke specifically of drone attacks on a refinery in Kremenchuk, in the Poltava region (center), as well as air and artillery strikes in Kharkiv (northeast), Donetsk (east), Dnipropetrovsk (center), Kherson and Mykolaiv (south).

(FILE) A damaged residential building stands on a shelled street in Avdiivka settlement near a frontline in Donetsk region, Ukraine, 28 August 2023, amid Russia’s ongoing invasion. EFE/EPA/ALEX BABENKO

The attacks resulted in three deaths in the Kharkiv, Donetsk and Kherson regions, according to the Ukrainian minister.

Third Russian attack on Avdiivka

Meanwhile, in Avdiivka, in the eastern Donetsk region, Ukrainian forces are preparing for the third Russian assault on the town, where more than 1,500 civilians remain.

“We are expecting a new wave, the third since October 10,” said the head of the Ukrainian military administration in the area, Vitali Barabash.

Barabash added that the enemy is regrouping and moving more forces into the area to continue the attack, which may be more powerful than the previous two attempts to take the city.

According to the official, the Russians are determined to take Avdiivka, one of the most fortified Ukrainian bastions since 2014.

They have learned from their previous mistakes and intend to take advantage of the bad weather, which is hampering the Ukrainian army’s logistics.

Russian military experts believe that Moscow’s forces could capture the city by the end of the year.

Russia repels missile and drone attacks

Russia also claimed on Wednesday to have repelled a massive Ukrainian attack on the occupied regions in the south of the country.

“Our air defense troops have foiled a massive enemy missile attack on Russia’s southern regions. Seven missiles launched by enemy aircraft and headed for Crimea were shot down over the Kherson region,” Vladimir Balance, the Russian-imposed governor of Kherson, wrote in a telegram.

The governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev, also reported on Telegram that anti-aircraft defenses “The military is working to destroy a large number of different air targets in different areas throughout the peninsula” of Crimea.

Meanwhile, the Russian Defense Ministry assured that over the past day, a total of 48 Ukrainian drones were shot down in the regions annexed by Russia in September 2022.

A handout photo made available by the Russian Defence Ministry’s press service shows Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu (C) delivering a speech during a meeting with the Russian Armed Forces commanders in Moscow, Russia, 01 November 2023. EFE/EPA/RUSSIAN DEFENCE MINISTRY PRESS SERVICE / HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY

Russian advance to “more favorable” positions.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that Ukraine was being defeated despite arms supplies from NATO countries.

According to Shoigu, Russian troops fighting in Ukraine “are maintaining active defense on the necessary, essential fronts. In some places it’s harder, in others simpler.”

He added that they are advancing and occupying more favorable positions.

The Polish publication Myśl Polska also writes in an opinion article that Russia seems to have regained the initiative in Ukraine, forcing Kiev to mobilize its last reserves.

In particular, the newspaper highlights the situation around the battle of Avdiivka, which will mark a before and after in the current stage of the war.

The American Institute for the Study of War (ISW) assured in its daily report that Ukrainian forces continue their offensive operations near Bakhmut and in Zaporizhia, where they still plan to reach Melitopol to cut off the land corridor that connects Russia with the annexed Crimea, through the regions occupied in 2022.EFE

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