Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is visiting the city of Dnipro amid reports of a large push by Kyiv’s forces less than a hundred miles south, along the Zaporizhzhia frontline.
“We started our working day in Dnipro. Field Staff in the area of responsibility of the Operational and strategic grouping of troops 'Tavria'. Situation at the front, course of offensive and defensive actions,” Zelensky posted on Telegram.
His visit and remarks come as Ukrainian forces continue their "offensive operation on Melitopol and Berdyansk axes, consolidating their positions, and inflict fire damage,” according to the military’s General Staff.
Kyiv adds combat power: It also follows comments from US officials that Ukraine has committed more forces to its counteroffensive in the southeast after nearly two months of slow progress, according to two US officials —a sign that they may have identified potential weaknesses in Russian defensive lines to exploit.
The newly committed units had been held in reserve until now. The military still has additional combat power in reserve, but this is the “main bulk” of the forces committed to the counteroffensive, one of the officials said.
In the southeast, the Ukrainian counteroffensive has broken through some elements of Russian defensive lines, the official said, and the reserve units have come in to capitalize on the opportunity.
Major push forward: On Wednesday, Ukraine appeared to have launched a major push south of Orikhiv, along the Melitopol axis, with Russian officials and bloggers saying Kyiv had committed up to 100 armoured vehicles to the offensive.
A member of the Russian-installed Zaporizhzhia military-civilian administration, Vladimir Rogov, wrote on Telegram that Ukrainian forces, backed by armored vehicles and tanks, had managed to “wedge in three sections of our first line of defense” near Robotyne.
Ukraine has yet to comment on the specifics of the push. Ukraine’s Deputy Defense Minister, Hanna Maliar, said only that offensive operations along the southern front were “gradually advancing,” with similar, gradual progress also taking place further east in the area of Staromaiorsk.
Zelensky concluded his nightly address on Wednesday with a cryptic message that Ukrainian forces were seeing success at the front line.
By the way, today our guys at the front had very good results. Well done,” he said. “More details later.”