Great Britain: Russia is building defensive structures around the city of Mariupol

LONDON (Reuters) – Russia has begun building defense structures around the city of Mariupol in southeastern Ukraine, the British Defense Ministry said Tuesday.

In a statement published on its Twitter account, the Ministry of Defense indicated that there are two factories that produce structures in reinforced concrete a tale scope.

He explained that the fortification of its lines by Russia in the areas under its control in Ukraine indicates its effort to prepare deep defenses behind the current front line.

The ministry suggested that Russia’s goal would be to “prevent any rapid Ukrainian advance in case of discoveries “.

This comes when the Russian Defense Ministry took a rare step on Monday, denying reports that a marine unit had suffered heavy loss of life and equipment. in a futile attack in eastern Ukraine.

The ministry’s response came to what Russian military bloggers claimed was an open letter from the 155th Pacific Fleet Brigade, that the brigade complained of being involved. in a “mystery” attack on Ukrainian forces southwest of Donetsk.

The letter stated: “Following a carefully planned attack by the ‘Great Generals’, we have lost approximately 300 soldiers dead, wounded or missing within four days. Half of our equipment.”

The report was published by Gray Zone, a popular military blog. The letter was addressed to Oleg Kozymyako, governor of the Far Eastern Primorye Territory, thousands of kilometers from Ukraine, where the unit is stationed.

Kozimiaco seemed to acknowledge the message was sincere, but said he overstated the actual losses.

“We have contacted the commanders. Yes, there are losses and they are in intense fighting course, but it is far from what was stated in this appeal, “Kozimiako said in a video statement on his Telegram channel.

For its part, the Ministry of Defense issued a statement in which rejects bloggers’ claims that the Marine Corps unit suffered “heavy and unnecessary losses in human lives and equipment “.

In contrast, in the past ten days, the unit had advanced five kilometers in Ukrainian defensive positions, he said. The ministry denied in private that the commanders of the brigade showed incompetence.

“Thanks to the skillful initiatives of the unit commanders, the losses of the Marines during the specified period did not exceed 1% of the combat strength, with 7% of the wounded strength, and a significant number of them have already returned in service, “the statement read.

The rare denial indicates that the reported losses touched a nerve in the ninth month of the war, when Russian forces came under severe pressure in the partially conquered Ukrainian regions that Moscow announced its annexation in a move that Kiev, the West and most of the UN countries denounced it as illegal.

Russian military bloggers, some of whom have a following of half a million or more sui social mediahave increasingly criticized the failures of Moscow’s generals since Ukraine regained control of much of the north-east in September.

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