Rus vehicles in convoy near Kharkiv Donbas
The MOD said "most of the severely weakened VDV units were dedicated to the defence of Russian-held territory west of the Dnipro River in Kherson Oblast" (Picture: Russian MOD).
Russia

Ukraine: Russia likely redeploying 'diluted' elite airborne troops in Donbas

Rus vehicles in convoy near Kharkiv Donbas
The MOD said "most of the severely weakened VDV units were dedicated to the defence of Russian-held territory west of the Dnipro River in Kherson Oblast" (Picture: Russian MOD).

Russia is likely redeploying elements of the VDV (airborne forces) to fronts in the Donbas region, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) has said.

The VDV are Russia's elite airborne force, however the MOD said in an update on Twitter many of them will have been sent to Donetsk and Luhansk in recent weeks.

"From September to October," the MOD tweeted.  

"Some VDV units have likely been reinforced with mobilised reservists.

"Although these poorly trained personnel will dilute VDV's supposedly elite capability, Russia will likely still allocate these units to sectors deemed especially important.

Watch: Ukrainian tanks on the move as UK sends more artillery rounds.

"Potential operational tasks for the VDV include supporting the defence of the Kremina-Svatove area in Luhansk Oblast or reinforcing offensive operations against the Donetsk Oblast town of Bakhmut."

It comes after the Defence Secretary announced the UK would send helicopters to Ukraine for the first time since the war with Russia began.

Ben Wallace said it will be the first time piloted aircraft are sent to the war-torn nation since Russia's invasion, with the first of the Sea King aircraft already arriving in the country.

The package of military aid also included providing Ukraine with 1,000 surface-to-air missiles and 125 anti-aircraft guns.