Russian troops to the north and west in the direction of Kyiv have resumed operations after a 72-hour cease-fire, and the fighting there may be fiercer than expected.
The battle for the Ukrainian capital Kyiv was resumed with a large-scale offensive. In the early morning of March 3, a huge explosion could be heard in Kyiv, according to a video posted on social media, a huge fireball lit up the night sky.
The Russian military confirmed it carried out a “high-precision long-range attack” in the Raisa Hora region of Kyiv, targeting a radio and television center, which Russia accuses of being used by Ukraine’s Security Service for “psychological warfare operations against Russia”.
Assessment of the American War Institute on the activities of the Russian Army in Ukraine, after suspending combat operations from February 27 to March 1, the Russian Army resumed offensive operations in the western suburbs of Kyiv on March 2 after receiving supplies.
U.S. Defense Department spokesman John Kirby told a Pentagon news conference that hundreds of Russian armored convoys heading toward Kyiv are currently “stagnating” on the road and the Russian Army has made no noticeable progress in the past 72 hours.
Satellite images and other media show the intention of the Russian Army to hit Kyiv with large-scale fire, more clearly than a direct attack. Especially the direction of attack to the west of the city, can cause more damage to the Ukrainian army.
Some analysts say that the Russian army’s large-scale assault on the capital Kyiv may advance further westward than people expect. It would significantly weaken the will of Kyiv defenders to resist.
According to sources, from March 2 the Russian army launched an offensive operation in the Zhytomyr region, extending the encirclement beyond Kyiv and further to the west than previously planned.
Especially the battle to capture the city of Zhitomyr, located 120 km west of Kiev. It is a transport hub connecting the capital Kyiv with the city of Lviv in the west, Warsaw in Poland, Minsk in Belarus and others.
Earlier reports said that the base of the 95th Airborne Brigade of the Ukrainian Army in Zhitomir was attacked by Russian cruise missiles. In addition to Zhitomyr, the Russian army’s northeast offensive force also advanced about 65 km from the center of Kyiv (from March 2-5).
If the Russian army captures Zhitomir with its advance north and west of Kiev, then the capital Kyiv will be surrounded on three sides. However, the Ukrainian Army there fought back fiercely, causing the Russian army’s attack in this direction to be stopped.
In the past week, in addition to the main attack direction of Kyiv, the Eastern Front of the Russian army also focused on Mariupol, the Southern Front occupied Kherson on March 4 and the Northeastern Front in Kharkov.
The area where the heaviest fighting took place in recent days was the port city of Mariupol on the Sea of Azov. The shelling of Mariupol stopped for a moment. From 10 am to 5 pm (local time) on March 5, the Russian Army ceased fire in Mariupol to evacuate people from the war zone.
The Russian military has announced the progress of its advance around the key city of Mariupol in southeastern Ukraine. The Russian Defense Ministry said that the pro-Russian Donetsk militia had narrowed the siege of Mariupol city and gained control of several residential areas.
On March 5, a spokesman for the pro-Russian militia said that, unless the Ukrainian army in Mariupul surrenders, they will launch an “all-out attack” on the city.
In the next few days, the Russian Army and pro-Russian militias will focus on attacking Mariupol. Once the city is captured, the southern Russian front will be connected to the eastern front, and the land axis from Crimea to Rostov-on-Don in southern Russia will be opened.
On the Southern Front: After capturing Kherson, the next step for the Russians was to attack Odessa. Currently, the Russian Army in Kherson is beginning to clear sporadic resistance in the city and most likely the next target is the port city of Nikolayev, before moving on to Odessa.
In the direction of the Northeastern Front, is advancing to capture the industrial city of Kharkov. Western media reported that the Russian army continued to launch direct attacks on Kharkiv and broke into the city; Street fights are fierce.