Using air strikes, Russian forces have been trying to control Avdiivka since mid-October as part of their slow, gradual advance into eastern Ukraine.
Officials say there is not a single intact building in Avdiivka, which is considered the gateway to Donetsk, 20 kilometers to the east.
Bad weather slows down battles
After two days of storms and snowfall in the south, weather forecasts indicate more rain in the east, making the ground wet and unsuitable for military maneuvers.
Sergei Tsakhotsky, a Ukrainian officer in the town of Avdiivka, told state television: “They started shelling the center of the town from Donetsk. Our battalion is fixed in its positions, but we do not see any military equipment coming.” According to what was reported by Reuters.
He added: “The weather is not suitable, but when the ground freezes due to frost, it will become possible to carry out an attack with military equipment.”
Volodymyr Vitio, another military spokesman, said the weather forced the Russians to make “adjustments” in their plans.
Vitio told the Espresso TV media channel: “We cannot advance when the ground is like this. The Russians previously brought reserve forces and sent them to the battlefield. But now, due to bad weather conditions, such military movements have decreased.”
Unofficial Russian accounts of the fighting indicated on Tuesday that Russian forces had made some progress north of Avdiivka and that heavy fighting was taking place in the area surrounding the coke plant there.
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