Russia announces “operational pause” in Ukraine to restore combat capability

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Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov announced Thursday an “operational pause” of Russian troops in Ukraine to rest and restore their combat capability.

“Units that carried out combat missions during the ‘special military operation’ are taking steps to replenish their combat capabilities. The servicemen have an opportunity to relax, receive letters and parcels from home,” Konashenkov has detailed in a statement shared by the Russian Defense Ministry.

The spokesman, however, did not specify the planned duration of the pause of Russian troops in Ukraine or in which areas of the frontline it is to be carried out.

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For its part, the U.S. Institute for the Study of War (ISW) has assured that Russian forces have not ceased active hostilities during this operational pause and have stated that “it is unlikely that they will do so.”

“Russian forces have still conducted limited ground offensives and air, artillery, and missile strikes on all axes on July 7, and are likely to continue to be limited to small-scale offensive actions as they rebuild forces and establish conditions for a more significant offensive,” the ISW has detailed on its Twitter account.

In an interview with former lawyer Mark Feigin–known for his activism against Russian President Vladimir Putin–published on YouTube, Ukrainian presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych has argued that Ukrainian attacks on Russian warehouses have prompted Russia’s troops to pause.

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“Attacks on warehouses significantly weakened the ability to do so in a quick and organized manner. Further preparation of the offensive on the second line now is a non-trivial task, because their reserves are ‘diminished’ and will diminish,” Arestovych explained in statements picked up by the Ukrainian channel TCH.

He has also assured that Russia “has taken a breather and is clinging to it,” claiming that “the pace of the offensive has slowed down.” “Despite the fact that the occupiers are carrying out tactical actions, an offensive with an attempt to penetrate is now impossible for them,” he added.

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