Russian forces have increased the pace of their attacks in Luhansk Oblast, eastern Ukraine, and after bolstering their outfit with further military units, have made “marginal advances”, the Institute for the Study of War have said.

Russian commanders have “fully committed elements of several conventional divisions” to push forwards on the Svatove-Kreminna line, the ISW reported, suggesting that the much-anticipated major spring offensive “has begun”.

Towards the end of the year, a Ukrainian recapture of the Luhansk city of Kreminna looked inevitable, but in the new year, Russian VDV specialist forces, as well as several other divisions,were transferred to the area to stage counter attacks and bolster defences.

It is now more unclear how the next few months will look in the northern parts of Luhansk.

If Russian forces fail to achieve more than merely marginal territorial gains around the Svatove-Kreminna line, however, the ISW suggested it would “provide a window of opportunity for Ukrainian forces to exploit with their own counteroffensive”.

*This story has not been edited by The Infallible staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.