"Russian and pro-Russian Luhansk People’s Republic separatist forces claim to have entered the outskirts of Siversk in Ukraine’s Donbas," the UK Ministry of Defence has said, APA reports citing The Guardian.
Acknowledging that reports have not corroborated, the ministry said Russian forces have been slowly advancing westwards and probing assaults towards Siversk from Lysychansk to open a pathway onward to Sloviansk and Kramatorsk.
"Bakhmut is likely to be the next objective, once Siversk is secured,” the report read.
The Institute for the Study of War also said Russia is likely preparing larger-scale offensive along the Sloviansk-Siversk-Bakhmut line. The US think tank said that Russia largely continued its operational pause with likely preparations underway for a more determined offensive.