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Enemy hitting our trenches - Opytne may open way to Donetsk, but it's challenging

Enemy hitting our trenches - Opytne may open way to Donetsk, but it's challenging Opytne may open the way to Donetsk, but it's not easy for the Ukrainian army (Photo: Getty Images)

Ukrainian defense forces have taken control of part of the village of Opytne in the Donetsk region. The situation in the area remains fluid, but it may be a cause for concern for the occupiers due to its proximity to Donetsk.

More about the importance of Opytne's liberation - in a comment by military expert Vladyslav Seleznov for RBC-Ukraine.

Where is Opytne located?

The village of Opytne is situated between Avdiivka and Donetsk. Specifically, its lands border Avdiivka to the north, and to the south, it is separated from Donetsk International Airport by the E50 highway (Kyivskyi district of Donetsk).

Enemy hitting our trenches - Opytne may open way to Donetsk, but it's challenging

Photo: Opytne is located near Avdiivka and temporarily occupied Donetsk (

Opytne came under the control of Russian occupiers during the full-scale war, particularly in November 2022, and it has been subjected to Russian shelling since the beginning of Russia's aggression in 2014. There was only a short distance between this village and Donetsk International Airport, the site of confrontations from September 2014 to January 23, 2015, spanning just a few kilometers.

The expert explained in a discussion with the agency that during the full-scale invasion, the enemy advanced, attempting to encircle Avdiivka, and they also operated in the vicinity of Opytne. At that time, they expended significant resources to secure specific positions and boundaries around this settlement.

"However, Ukrainian intelligence closely monitors the actions of Russian occupation forces. As soon as it became clear that the enemy had insufficient operational reserves, our army launched a counteroffensive in this front sector," says Seleznov.

A tactical-level operation

In the conversation with RBC-Ukraine, the expert emphasizes that the advance of Ukrainian Defense Forces towards Opytne may indicate a tactical-level counteroffensive, which is relatively limited in scale.

"The enemy immediately responded to our advance. The Ukrainian army entered the village initially because the enemy abandoned everything and retreated further. However, the enemy's aviation became active. Our army was forced to exit the village and establish positions on the outskirts of this settlement," Seleznov explains.

Can the Ukrainian Armed Forces advance toward Donetsk?

The interlocutor points out that Ukrainian soldiers face a challenging situation as the Russian army shells their trenches. However, there is a key factor at play here.

"The enemy understands the unacceptable possibility that the Ukrainian army could advance and reach the Spartak area, consequently entering the suburbs of Donetsk, as Spartak is one of the microdistricts in the Donetsk suburbs. This is intolerable for the occupiers because Putin initially launched the so-called 'special operation' to capture the entire Luhansk and Donetsk regions. Still, it turned out that the Ukrainian army could progress towards Donetsk," Seleznov emphasizes.

In his opinion, this could have a significant media impact. Furthermore, the adversary must deploy additional resources operationally to stabilize the battlefield rapidly.

"However, the enemy does not have abundant resources because there are other fronts where they must apply additional forces, particularly in the south of the Zaporizhzhia region at the junction of the Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia regions," Seleznyov notes.

What happens next?

According to the expert, the situation will develop depending on the available opportunities. He explains that the Ukrainian army has limited resources in the Avdiivka sector of the front.

"Our main focus of attention is on the Zaporizhzhia direction. But even with limited resources, we can improve our tactical position by pushing back enemy units from Avdiivka. This means that citizens will primarily be safer," Seleznov adds.

Regarding prospects, it is challenging to assess them because it is unclear how many additional resources the enemy's army can muster to fundamentally change the situation on the battlefield in the Opytne area, Seleznov asserts.

In essence, two possible scenarios can be delineated here.

In the first scenario, if the Russians have significant resources, the Ukrainian army may need to conduct maneuverable defense and shift positions to other frontlines. If the enemy fails to achieve this, the situation will stabilize.


According to the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the OSUV "Tavria" operational area on the Avdiivka, Maryinka, and Shakhtarsk directions, our defense forces continue to maintain the initiative.

The head of the Avdiivka municipal military administration, Vitalii Barabash, reported that Ukrainian soldiers conducted a successful operation near Avdiivka and took control of part of Opytne. He added that combat actions are ongoing within the village's territory.

The Deputy Minister of Defense, Hanna Maliar, confirmed this information this morning. According to her, there was a movement of Ukrainian Armed Forces near Opytne, and our defenders successfully occupied a portion of this settlement.

Furthermore, Ukrainian forces also achieved partial success in the Novomykhailivka area of the Donetsk region during the week. However, the Ministry of Defense later added that the situation is highly dynamic. Battles are ongoing, and there may be changes in positions and the overall condition.