Russia Willing To Risk Aviation Losses In Pursuit Of Gains In Avdiivka Sector - ISW

(MENAFN- UkrinForm) Russian forces appear to be willing to risk continued aviation losses in pursuit of tactical gains in eastern Ukraine, likely along the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line.

That's according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), Ukrinform reports.

Ukrainian military officials reported that Ukrainian forces have shot down 15 Russian aircraft since February 17.

"Previous Russian aircraft losses have prompted Russian forces to temporarily decrease aviation activity throughout Ukraine, but the increased rate of Russian aviation losses in Ukraine in the past weeks has yet to prompt Russian forces to significantly decrease tactical aviation activity," ISW analysts said.

ISW assessed that Russian forces temporarily established limited and localized air superiority during the final days of the Russian seizure of Avdiivka.

"Russian forces are likely attempting to reestablish this limited and localized air superiority in order to support tactical Russian advances in the Avdiivka direction and have decided that continued offensive operations with air support outweigh the risk of losing more aircraft," the report said.

ISW continues to assess that the reported loss of 15 aircraft and possibly some highly trained pilots in about two weeks is not negligible for the Russian military given that Russia likely has about 300 various Sukhoi fighter aircraft.


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