Russian tanks and armored vehicles littered the area around the embattled town of Avdiivka

A fragment of a destroyed Russian tank on the roadside on the outskirts of Kharkiv on February 26, 2022. Destroyed and damaged Russian tanks litter the area around the embattled eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka, new footage appears to show. Sergey BOBOK/AFP via Getty Images

Destroyed and damaged Russian tanks and armored vehicles litter the area around the embattled town of Avdiivka, new footage appears to show, as Moscow’s troops close in on the strategic eastern Ukrainian settlement.

A brief clip, which appears to be drone footage, looks to show Russian military vehicles scattered across the countryside. Social media accounts widely sharing the video located the clip in the region around Avdiivka, a hotspot of clashes between Russian and Ukrainian forces in Donetsk.

“A Russian army volunteer supplier came to a Russian church to ask for donations. While speaking, he accidentally voiced out the horrible number of losses and the miserable state of still alive Russian soldiers near Donetsk,” Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to Ukraine’s minister of internal affairs, wrote on X (formerly known as Twitter) while sharing the video.

It wasn’t possible to independently verify when and where the footage was filmed, and Newsweek has reached out to the Russian defense ministry for comment via email.

The Donbas town of Avdiivka has spent much of the past decade on the front line between Ukrainian and Russian — or Moscow-backed — forces in the east of the country.

Moscow’s forces began a major push around the town in early October, with waves of attacks appearing to come in ebbs and flows. Avdiivka has become the focus of Russia’s main offensive efforts after months of Ukrainian pushes along a largely static front line in the south and east of the country.

Ukrainian commanders reported a renewed effort around Avdiivka from Russian troops last week, although the efforts likely came with “weaker mechanized capabilities than in the previous offensive waves that occurred in October,” the U.S. think tank, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), said on Friday.

Russian tank and armored vehicle losses are thought to have been significant around Avdiivka, with fierce battles seeing high casualty rates. The past six weeks have “likely seen some of the highest Russian casualty rates of the war so far,” the British defense ministry said on Monday, adding that this is down to Russia’s designs on Avdiivka.

However, Russia has made creeping advances around the heavily fortified town, prying territory away from Ukrainian control. Although Russian forces did not make any confirmed advances on Monday, the Kremlin ploughed on with operations around Avdiivka, the ISW said in its latest assessment.

“The enemy is attempting to storm the city from all directions,” Vitaly Barabash, the head of Avdiivka’s military administration, added on Monday, according to media reports. Ukraine came up against around 30 Russian attacks around Avdiivka on Tuesday, Colonel Oleksandr Shtupun, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s Tavria grouping of forces, told Ukrainian media, adding that Russia was looking to advance in six directions around the town.

Ukrainian fighters are “firmly holding the defense” around Avdiivka, Ukrainian commander Oleksandr Tarnavskyi said on Tuesday. Russian forces continue to attack Avdiivka, the General Staff of Ukraine’s armed forces added in a statement posted to social media on Tuesday.

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