Ukrainian partisans launched a series of further devastating attacks on Russian officials in January, as occupation authorities continue to struggle to contain the insurgency. Kyiv’s army of saboteurs have relentlessly attacked targets in Russia’s rear, spreading panic and fear among Putin’s administrators and troops. The partisans have deployed a range of devices – from car bombings to carefully planned assassinations of collaborators – to create mayhem behind enemy lines.
The attacks have forced the Russians to divert precious resources away from the frontlines to help protect the rear areas.
One of the latest partisan strikes targeted a major Russian ammunition depot in Melitopol on January 8.
The Ukrainian Resistance Center (URC) claimed Ukrainian saboteurs blew up Russian armaments that were being stored at the Hydromash factory in Zaporizhian city.
In a statement on their website, the URC wrote: “The underground continues to help extend the ‘cotton’ season at the military facilities of the occupiers.
“This time, an ammunition depot was detonated on the territory of the ‘Hydromash’ factory captured by the Russians in the temporarily occupied Melitopol.
“The explosions lasted for several hours.”
They urged the public to continue providing any information they may have on Russian military targets using special contact forms.
Ukrainian sources also reported an explosion on the outskirts of Berdyansk in the Zaporizhia region on January 13 and showed images of a burning car.
Analysts at the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) suggested that the explosion was probably caused by partisans.
They noted: “Ukrainian partisans may have carried out an attack, given the prevalence of Ukrainian improvised explosive device attacks against cars in occupied Zaporizhia Oblast.”
Images show a car engulfed in flames, as firefighters attempt to put out the blaze.
ISW researchers claimed partisans were helping to improve the targeting intelligence of Ukrainian forces.
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They also noted how the underground movement is becoming much more effective and harder to contain.
In response, Russian occupation authorities are lashing out in a desperate bid to stem the tide of attacks.
Reports from Melitopol claim the occupation authorities are encouraging the public to denounce anyone expressing pro-Ukrainian opinions.
Ivan Fedorov, the Ukrainian mayor of Melitopol, said Russian officials are urging residents to anonymously report their neighbors in exchange for money and are intimidating civilians through “preventative talks” and torture.
He added that Russian authorities are deporting pro-Ukrainian civilians they arrest “outside of the occupied territories”.
Moscow’s officials are also stepping up search and filtration measures over growing concern about collaboration between the local population and Ukrainian forces.
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Ukraine’s government officials said: “The enemy is carrying out filtering measures in some settlements of the Melitopol district of the Zaporizhzhia region.
“During the inspection, the occupiers pay special attention to telephones, looking for confirmation of cooperation with the Defense Forces of Ukraine.”
On Saturday, Germany faced a growing backlash over its present refusal to deliver much needed Leopard tanks to Ukraine.
An adviser to the Ukrainian president said that caution and slow decision making over whether to dispatch the tanks was costing lives.