Extraordinary footage has revealed the breathless intensity of trench warfare in eastern Ukraine, with Ukrainian soldiers firing at Russian troops just yards away from them.
Footage shows the Ukrainian soldiers stalking through a Russian trench in the Donetsk region and shooting dead one of Vladimir Putin‘s men.
Video captured on helmet cameras also shows Ukrainian soldiers firing at Russian soldiers from their small bunkers amidst warped tree roots blackened by artillery fire.
In the clip, Ukrainian soldiers fire their automatic weapons from their positions at Russian soldiers, while a tank provides support to the troops.
The Ukrainian troops were then seen in drone footage running across a no man’s land reminiscent of a desolate First World War battlefield and storming a trench before capturing the Russian position.
One Ukrainian soldier is seen edging his way down the narrow trench and throwing a grenade towards where he believed enemy soldiers were hiding in the suspenseful footage. As soon as he spots a Russian soldier, he quickly opens fire and shoots him dead.
Video captured on helmet cameras also shows Ukrainian soldiers firing at Russian soldiers from their small bunkers amidst warped tree roots blackened by artillery fire
Extraordinary footage has revealed the breathless intensity of trench warfare in eastern Ukraine, with Ukrainian soldiers firing at Russian troops just yards away from them
The Ukrainian troops were then seen in drone footage running across a no man’s land reminiscent of a desolate First World War battlefield and storming a Russian trench before capturing it
One Ukrainian soldier is seen edging his way down the narrow trench and throwing a grenade towards where he believed enemy soldiers were hiding in the suspenseful footage.
As soon as he spots a Russian soldier, he quickly opens fire and shoots him dead.
The six-minute footage showed Ukrainian soldiers in an intense battle and firing at the Russian soldiers before there was a pause in hostilities while they reloaded their weapons and smoked cigarettes to calm their nerves.
The footage then shows a Ukrainian soldier being handed ammunition magazines before the sound of gunfire can be heard breaking out in the distance.
The incredible raw footage was obtained from the K2 Combat Group of the 54th Separate Mechanized Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on Monday.
The battalion shared the video and said: ‘An ordinary six and a half minutes of ordinary fighters of the ordinary mechanised battalion K2 Combat Group of the 54th Separate Mechanized Brigade.
‘No editing, no filters, no decorations. With blood, sweat, and smoke. This is how we bring victory closer.’
They also said that the images were filmed in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine.
It comes as President Volodymyr Zelensky and his top military command agreed today to continue to defend Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine.
Following a meeting involving the president, top government officials and military commanders, Zelensky’s office said in a statement: ‘After considering the defensive operation in the Bakhmut direction, all members … expressed a common position to continue holding and defending the city of Bakhmut.’
Earlier, Ukrainian soldiers said Russian troops keep coming in waves along the frontline in eastern Ukraine – a sign of no letup in Russia’s winter offensive despite Moscow having failed to secure any big victories so far.
In the clip, Ukrainian soldiers fire their automatic weapons from their positions at Russian soldiers, while a tank provides support to the troops
Ukrainian service members fire a howitzer M119 at a front line near the city of Bakhmut, Ukraine, on March 10
Russia and Ukraine are locked in the bloodiest infantry battle in Europe since the Second World War, after Moscow launched a winter offensive with hundreds of thousands of freshly called up reservists and mercenaries. Frontlines have barely budged in more than four months despite huge losses on both sides.
With assaults elsewhere on the front having failed, Russia appears determined to secure the ruins of the small city of Bakhmut in what would be its first victory since mid-2022.
In an overnight video address, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said Ukraine’s ‘future is being decided’ in battles in the east, including Bakhmut, where Ukrainian commanders say they are killing enough Russian attackers to justify staying and fighting for a ruined city that has nearly been surrounded.
‘It is very tough in the east – very painful,’ Zelenskiy said. ‘We have to destroy the enemy’s military power. And we shall destroy it.’
Further north on the frontline near Kreminna, Oleksandr, 50, commander of a unit in Ukraine’s 110th battalion, said Russian assaults were still relentless despite having claimed little ground there. The Russians are trying to edge back towards Lyman, a major transit hub Ukraine recaptured last year.
‘They are pushing hard. They are lobbing mortar bombs at us,’ Oleksandr told Reuters, describing Russian units advancing in three-man fire teams, with another wave behind them sent to replace them when they are killed.
‘At night they always attack on foot and we sit, looking through our thermal goggles, and shooting them.’
The Kremlin, for its part, said it was committed to using force to achieve its war aims, and Kyiv must accept ‘new realities’ – its shorthand for Russia’s claim to have annexed nearly a fifth of Ukraine, which it invaded a year ago.
‘We have to achieve our goals. Right now this is only possible by military means due to the current position of the Kyiv regime,’ Russian state news agencies quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that what was at stake in Ukraine was Russia’s very existence.
After recapturing swathes of territory in the second half of 2022, Kyiv has kept mainly to the defensive over the past four months, while Moscow has launched its big winter offensive using its freshly mobilised reservists and convicts recruited from jail as mercenaries.
Ukrainian officials say they are preparing their own counter-offensive for later this year, once muddy ground dries up and hundreds of Western tanks and armoured vehicles arrive.
Soldiers of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army hold their positions at the front line near Bakhmut, Donetsk region, on March 11
A soldier of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army prepares ammunition to fire at Russian front line positions near Bakhmut, on March 11
But the outcome of those campaigns could depend on which side emerges stronger after Russia’s winter assault, with both sides taking huge casualties in fighting they describe as a meat grinder.
Britain’s Ministry of Defence said on Tuesday that Moscow was running short of ammunition, ‘to the extent that extremely punitive shell-rationing is in force on many parts of the front’.
‘This has almost certainly been a key reason why no Russian formation has recently been able to generate operationally significant offensive action,’ it said in a daily intelligence update.
But Ukraine is also facing shortages of shells, and ultimately has a smaller population to commit to a battle of attrition. Some military experts say Bakhmut is unfavourable ground for Kyiv to fight on, against Russian forces that have advanced far enough around the city to hit Ukrainian supply lines in the rear.
‘We could lose here everything we wanted to use for those counter-offensives,’ Ukrainian military analyst Oleh Zhdanov said of the battle for Bakhmut.