British Intelligence update on Ukraine as of May. 13
Over the last four days, elements of Russia’s 72nd Separate Motor Rifle Brigade (72 SMRB) likely withdrew in bad order from their positions on the southern flank of the Bakhmut operation. Ukrainian forces regained at least a kilometre of territory.
The area has some tactical significance because it was a Russian bridgehead on the western side of the Donets-Donbas Canal, which marks the front line through parts of the sector.
72 SMRB is an element of Russia’s 3rd Army Corps, a formation created in Autumn 2023 and dogged with allegations of poor morale and limited combat effectiveness.
Its deployment to such a demanding and operationally important sector highlights Russia’s severe shortage of credible combat units.