Dead end

In the past 10 months, Russia managed to only capture about 4% of Donbas. Troops are basically treading water while losses are mounting. Novaya Gazeta Europe dissects Russia’s war effort in Ukraine

Bodies of killed Russian soldiers, March 2022. Photo: MARCUS YAM / LOS ANGELES TIMES

Having started the war with an attempt to “capture Kyiv in three days”, Russia has officially bogged down in fighting in 2023. The Battle for Donbas has been going on for nine months, and the Russian army spent six of them standing in one place. Russia only managed to seize a little over 2,000 square kilometres of territories in bloody clashes, or just 4% of Ukraine’s Donetsk and Luhansk regions. The last major city that Russian forces occupied was Lysychansk in early July. Novaya-Europe’s data department takes a closer look at the Kremlin’s blitzkrieg that turned into a long war of attrition which it most likely cannot win.