Ukraine conflict: Threat of Western-supplied weapon systems has changed Russian tactics suggests MoD

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has suggested in their latest intelligence update that the threat Russia feels from the increased range and precision of Western-supplied systems has resulted in a change of tactics from the Kremlin.

The MoD suggested that Russian forces have positioned pyramidal radar reflectors to hide the Antonivskiy Bridge and the recently damaged nearby rail bridge from synthetic aperture radar imagery following a recent strike.

Ukraine has effectively used HIMARS launchers, which fire medium-range rockets and can be quickly moved before Russia can target them with return fire, and have been seeking more launchers from the United States.

Last week authorities in the Russian-controlled Ukrainian city of Kherson closed the city's only bridge across the Dnieper river after it came under fire from US-supplied high mobility artillery rocket systems.

Ukrainian counteroffensives could benefit from the destruction of the bridge – with damage to the bridge impacting Russian supplies to forces in the south.

The update from the MoD reads: “Ukraine’s missile and artillery units continue to target Russian military strongholds, personnel clusters, logistical support bases and ammunition depots.

"This will highly likely impact Russian military logistical resupply and put pressure on Russian military combat support elements.

"On 03 August 2022, the first vessel with Ukrainian grain arrived at the Bosphorus Strait having transited the Black Sea from Odesa. It is almost certain the success of this transit will result in more frequent transits in both directions.

A picture taken on July 21, 2022 shows a car moving past a crater on Kherson's Antonovsky (Antonivskiy) bridge across the Dnipro river caused by a Ukrainian rocket strike, amid the ongoing Russian military action in Ukraine. (Photo by STRINGER / AFP) (Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images)

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"Clearing the backlog caused by the blockade that has been in place since February 2022 will remain a logistical challenge.”

The first ship to leave Ukraine was headed to Lebanon on Wednesday after a three-hour inspection in Turkish waters.

The update from the MoD added: "Russian forces have almost certainly positioned pyramidal radar reflectors in the water near the recently damaged Antonivskiy Bridge and by the recently damaged nearby rail bridge, both of which cross over the Dnipro River in Kherson, southern Ukraine.

“The radar reflectors are likely being used to hide the bridge from synthetic aperture radar imagery and possible missile targeting equipment. This highlights the threat Russia feels from the increased range and precision of Western-supplied systems."