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British Defence Intelligence Update Ukraine – 25 November 2022

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  • Two months after President Putin announced a ‘partial mobilisation’, common themes are emerging in the experience of mobilised Russian reservists.
  • Their deployment is often characterised by confusion over eligibility for service, inadequate training and personal equipment, and commitment to highly attritional combat missions.
  • Most – though not all – mobilised reservists have previously served and numerous examples suggest that reservists are highly likely not having their medical status adequately reviewed and many are being compelled to serve with serious, chronic health conditions.
  • Mobilised reservists have highly likely experienced particularly heavy casualties after being committed to dig ambitious trench systems while under artillery fire around the Luhansk Oblast town of Svatove.
  • In Donetsk Oblast, reservists have been killed in large numbers in frontal assaults into well-established Ukrainian defensive zones around the town of Bakhmut.
  • The Kremlin will likely be concerned that an increasing number of reservists’ families are prepared to risk arrest by protesting against the conditions their relatives are serving under.

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