Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations on at least three sectors of the front on August 3 and reportedly advanced in some areas. The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Ukrainian forces continued offensive operations in the Berdyansk (Zaporizhia-Donetsk Oblast border area) and Melitopol (western Zaporizhia Oblast) directions, and Ukrainian officials stated that Ukrainian forces continued to advance in the Bakhmut direction. Ukrainian Director of the Department of Planning of the Main Directorate of the National Guard Colonel Mykola Urshalovych stated that Ukrainian forces advanced up to 650m into Russian defenses along a 1.5km front in the Melitopol direction. A Russian milblogger claimed that Ukrainian forces advanced near Mykilske (27km southwest of Donetsk City) in western Donetsk Oblast. Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksiy Danilov stated on August 3 that the Ukrainian counteroffensive does not have a set deadline or schedule. Danilov added that Russian defensive lines along the front continue to be heavily mined, with some areas having three, four, or five mines per square meter.
Russian forces conducted a series of drone strikes on August 3, primarily targeting Kyiv. The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Ukrainian air defenses shot down all 15 Iranian-made Shahed-131/136 drones launched by Russian forces on August 3.The Kyiv City Military Administration reported that Ukrainian air defenses destroyed almost a dozen targets near Kyiv on August 3. Ukrainian Air Force Spokesperson Colonel Yuriy Ihnat stated that Russian forces launched the drones from occupied Crimea, Krasnodar Krai, and Kursk and Bryansk oblasts. Ihnat added that Russian forces have moved many drone launch sites to the eastern coast of the Sea of Azov in Krasnodar Krai due to Ukrainian strike capabilities against Crimea and Russian border regions.
The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) took down Russian Airborne Forces (VDV) Commander Colonel General Mikhail Teplinsky’s August 2 speech, possibly due to his disclosure of Russian casualties in Ukraine. Teplinsky claimed on VDV Day (August 2, a holiday celebrating the Russian airborne forces) that at least 8,500 VDV personnel have been wounded in Ukraine since the start of the war, a rare official disclosure of Russian casualties, which Russian officials have largely sought to obscure as the war has progressed. Russian MoD mouthpiece TV Zvezda took down Teplinsky’s August 2 speech, and some Russian sources claimed this removal was due to the casualty count. BBC and opposition outlet Mediazona have confirmed that at least 1,800 VDV personnel were killed in action in Ukraine as of July 30, and a killed to wounded ratio of 1:3 is on average (if not slightly better) for Russian forces in Ukraine. The Russian MoD may have also sought to censor Teplinsky’s disclosure of details regarding new VDV formations, as Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and other military officials have previously discussed the establishment of other formations but not specified their names and exact subordination to existing units. Teplinsky previously capitalized on Russia’s ”Defender of the Fatherland” Day on February 23 to criticize Russian Chief of the General Staff and overall theater commander Army General Valery Gerasimov about the extent of Russian casualties in Ukraine.
Russian prosecutors reportedly classified the investigation into ardent Russian ultranationalist and former FSB officer Igor Girkin on August 2.Girkin’s lawyer Alexander Molokhov stated that materials relevant to Girkin’s case have been classified as “top secret” and refused to issue further comments so as to not violate his non-disclosure agreements. Girkin‘s supporters continued to call for the start of a movement to demand Girkin’s release via political means and claimed that Girkin is a political prisoner. Girkin’s wife Miroslava Reginskaya appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin directly in a public letter for Girkin’s release, noting that Girkin’s arrest was either someone’s attempt to curry favor with unnamed officials or an effort to censor the truth about the situation on the frontlines.
- Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations on at least three sectors of the front on August 3 and reportedly advanced in some areas.
- Russian forces conducted a series of drone strikes on August 3, primarily targeting Kyiv.
- The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) took down Russian Airborne Forces (VDV) Commander Colonel General Mikhail Teplinsky’s August 2 speech, possibly due to his disclosure of Russian casualties in Ukraine.
- Russian prosecutors reportedly classified the investigation into ardent Russian ultranationalist and former FSB officer Igor Girkin on August 2.
- Russian forces conducted offensive operations along the Kupyansk-Svatove-Kreminna line, near Bakhmut, along the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line, and in the western Donetsk-eastern Zaporizhia Oblast border area on August 3 and made advances in certain areas.
- Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations on at least three sectors of the front on August 3 and reportedly advanced near Kreminna and Vuhledar.
- The Kremlin is attempting to establish favorable conditions to attract additional volunteers to serve in the Russian Armed Forces.
- A report from Yale University’s Conflict Observatory supports ISW’s longstanding assessments that Russian and occupation authorities are using forced passportization measures to consolidate social and legal control over occupied areas of Ukraine.