Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Oleksiy Danilov says Kiev has been offered a deal in a “Korean scenario”. “Now we are being offered the Korean option. The so-called conditional “38th parallel”. There are such Ukrainians here, and there are no such Ukrainians here… I know for sure that one of the options that can be offered to us is ’38 ° parallel’,” Danilov said on the Telethon broadcast. According to him, now, during meetings with European politicians, Moscow’s representatives would have conveyed “messages that they are ready to make concessions, but in order to fix the status quo we have today”.
On January 9, the Russians denied this proposal through the voice of President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dimitry Peskov who defined the Ukrainian reports according to which Dmitry Kozak is in contact with European politicians for a ceasefire with Ukraine as “hoaxes”. “Korean option”. Also on January 9 Mykhailo Podolyak, adviser to the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, told the nationally televised marathon that the liberation of Crimea is a matter of time and that Russia will leave as soon as Crimea is under full control of Ukrainian fire.
And always in terms of statements, the ambassador of Ukraine to the United Kingdom, Vadym Prystaiko, in a recent interview with Newsweek (the ambassador was among the delegates for the Minsk agreements) declared: “We are losing people here and there . It is not advertised who the military or civilian dead are, but one can imagine that the numbers are enormous and uncomfortable. And cities, some of which have been completely destroyed. The West has a unique possibility. There are not many countries in the world willing to sacrifice so many lives, territories and decades of development to destroy the arch-rival”.
Pope Francis, on January 8, renewed his invitation to pray for peace and for the Ukrainian people and to remember in his prayers the mothers, both Russian and Ukrainian, who lost their children on the battlefield. The Pontiff said it in the traditional Sunday address to the faithful in St. Peter’s Square, dedicated this time to the sacrament of Baptism. Russian Ambassador to the Holy See Alexander Avdeev brought Pope Francis greetings and New Year’s wishes from Russian President Vladimir Putin and received mutual wishes from the pontiff. The diplomat told TASS Jan. 9 that while communicating with the pontiff after a meeting with representatives of the diplomatic corps, Francis thanked the embassy for facilitating the exchange of prisoners between Russia and Ukraine.
On January 8, following the end of the ceasefire declared by Russia, an air raid alert was declared in eastern Ukraine twice in the night. The authorities reported explosions in Zaporizhizhia and Kramatorsk, controlled by Kiev, and in the Kharkiv region.
According to Ukrainian and Russian media, another prisoner exchange took place on January 8. 50 Russian fighters released from captivity landed in Chkalovsky last night. And another 50 Ukrainians returned home. The Russians were flown in by an IL-76M. They will be treated and rehabilitated in the medical institutions of the Ministry of Defense.
While from the front we learn on January 9 that the Russians have broken through at Soledar and the WAGNER group is fighting a real urban war. According to online videos the WAGNER group is trying to take the town hall building. In the social sphere there is talk of a mass exodus of Ukrainian forces from Soledar. Soldiers of the 61st Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine began to leave their positions already in the evening.
According to the commander of the special forces and deputy commander of the 2nd Army Corps of the LNR People’s Militia, Apty Alaudinov, Soledar could be released in the coming days. “I think in the coming days we will hear about the release of Soledar and Bachmut, among others. Because PMC Wagner was able to achieve a very good result in those areas, which were especially important directly for the logistics of the Ukrainian formations. Actually , already this will give the main emphasis to the victory over these units,” Alaudinov said.
According to official Ukrainian sources, to be exact according to Volodymyr Zelensky’s statements: “Soledar and Bakhmut are holding out, other units will be launched there. Those same additional units – that time has come, we are going to Bachmut. Our battalion, which needs to be replenished with personnel, has been dispatched.”
If the images and posts coming from the social sphere are not mere propaganda, it will be a bloodbath for Ukrainians. Since 4 November, in fact, we have always learned via social media that to strengthen the Russian artillery and make it more efficient, it was to implemented the use of kamikaze UAVs Geran-2 (shahid 136), to hit objects close to the front line (at a distance not exceeding 100-200 km). In this way the military are hit from 100 km away.
LNR People’s Militia spokesman Filiponenko confirms that a mass exodus of Ukrainian soldiers from the city’s development has been reported in Soledar. According to him, Kiev is trying to hide the retreat from Soledar and to convince its military that the rotation is taking place there, but this is not true. But Zelensky’s claims about strengthening the defenses of Bachmut and Soledar are confirmed by intelligence. The Ukrainian fighters are entering what WAGNER called the “Bachmut meat grinder”. WAGNER founder Yevgeny Prigozhin always said that Bachmut was not just a city to be taken but a way to exhaust the Ukrainian army. According to the latest information, the Luhansk border guard detachment of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine has been relocated to Bachmut/Artemivsk. Prigozhin especially stressed that Soledar is taken by storm exclusively by WAGNER and that any speculation about it is inappropriate.
Apparently the WAGNER group could attempt an encirclement from south of Soledar. But above all the taking of Soledar would lead to the wedging between Soledar and Bachmut and finally the interruption of the key communications of Ukraine – the road between Bachmut and Sivers’k and this is the objective of the Russians to continue the taking of Donbass.
According to the ISW, Russian forces continued to counterattack on the Svatove-Kreminna line. The head of the Luhansk administration, Serhiy Gaidai, said on January 8 that Russian troops had moved several battalions from the Bachmut area to the Kreminna area. Russian troops continued offensive operations near Bachmut and on the western outskirts of Donetsk. The British Defense Ministry reported that in recent weeks, Russian troops have been expanding their defensive fortifications in the Zaporizhizhia region along the Vasylivka-Orekhov line. The Russian authorities have stepped up efforts to transport the population to the annexed territories. The Russians, it is learned via social media, are expecting a Ukrainian attack on Zaporizhizhia
According to the Ukrainian General Staff, the Russian Armed Forces carried out one missile strike and 19 air strikes. More than 10 rocket launches were made.
The Russian Armed Forces continue to shell the front territory – the Belgorod region, where the air defense system was working, came under constant fire. In response, the Russian Armed Forces have been working on targets in Volchansk
In the Donetsk direction, the Ukrainians carried out 17 shelling with MLRS, 155mm and 152mm artillery. In the direction of Yasynuvata – 3 shelling with 152 and 122 mm artillery. On Horlivka – 8 shelling from 155mm artillery. On Starobeshevo – 1 shelling from Tochka-U. Over Shakhterskoye – 1 round of fire from the Tochka-U missile launcher. Two civilians killed, one wounded.
The Belarusian Defense Ministry announced yesterday that a joint tactical flight exercise will be held from 16 January to 1 February 2023 with the aviation units of the Belarusian and Russian Armed Forces.
In the direction of Kherson, Russian artillery hit the regional center. Ukrainian positions at Antonovka and Zelenovka were also attacked. In the direction of Zaporizhzhya, the Russian Armed Forces shelled Ukrainian troops in a large area along the line of contact. Kamianske, Stepne, Malye Shcherbaki, Bilohorye and Charovne came under fire.
On the Donetsk front, Russian troops attacked in the Pobeda area. They also carried out offensives towards Pervomayskoye and near Vodyane. The Ukrainian army bombed Donetsk again. The Russian one hit a Ukrainian stronghold in Avdeevka.
PMC Wagner is attacking the eastern outskirts of Bachmut and the southeastern outskirts of Soledar. And to the north he is trying to reach Rozdolivka.
In the direction of Luhansk, Russian forces again attacked near Belogorovka, Makiivka and Stelmakhivka.
No one is currently advancing near Vuhledar.
In the late morning of January 9, we always learn via social media that Zaluzhny suggested to Zelensky not to burn the reserves to defend Soledar, but to withdraw the troops to the second line of defense. Ukrainian casualties are significant and the city’s supplies have been cut off, Soledar is now in a tactical encirclement. According to the maps, posted by WAGNER, half of the city has already been liberated. At the same time, Bakhmuts’ke, on the southeastern outskirts of Soledar, was reported to have been completely liberated. The city will probably be able to go around it from the southern side, and subsequently.