Fighting dragged on Friday in a region that Moscow is actively attempting to retake as Ukrainian forces using captured weaponry shot at Russian positions close to the important eastern city of Bakhmut.
In the Donetsk region, Russian forces have repeatedly attacked Bakhmut and neighbouring Avdiivka but have been repulsed with what Kyiv claims are significant losses.
‘There are a lot of them (Russians), both people and equipment,’ said a soldier who only went by the Ukrainian word for sailor, Moriak. ‘Last week there was very intense fighting.’
A captured Russian T-80 tank and a 2S23 Nona SVK self-propelled mortar being operated by Ukrainian personnel were seen shooting at targets outside of Bakhmut by Reuters journalists.
According to the military of Ukraine, both were taken in March and required months to be rebuilt. The 120 mm mortar on the eight-wheel Nona, under Moriak’s command, can fire up to 10 rounds per minute.
He declared, ‘They gave us this gift, and it has high, extremely high (accuracy), and it now works against them, helping us push them away.’