A top Ukrainian general who is leading Kyiv's new offensive on the eastern front expects it to be a long-haul battle with no fast results.
The Commander of Ukraine's Ground Forces, General Oleksandr Syrskyi, in an interview with the BBC, said: "We'd like to get very fast results... but in reality, it's practically impossible."
According to the Ministry of Defence's (MOD) latest update on the situation in Ukraine: "Over the last week, fighting has continued in multiple sectors of the front, with both sides achieving marginal advances in different areas."
Ukraine continues to resource "significant effort" around Russian-held Bakhmut, the latest Defence Intelligence believes.
Gen Syrskyi was asked about some of his troops in Bakhmut trying to take back ground and whether his goal was to recapture the city.
He reportedly smiled and stated: "Yes, of course. I try to do it," before adding that "we'd like to get very fast results... but in reality, it's practically impossible."
Ukrainian military leadership 'unity'
The head of military operations in eastern Ukraine highlighted "unity" as Ukraine's distinct advantage containing to fuel their resistance against Russian forces.
Gen Syrskyi told the BBC: "I believe the unity of our military leadership and our soldiers' trust in each other is a strong point of our army."
Said to be the mastermind behind Ukraine's successful counter-attack in Kharkiv last summer, Gen Syrskyi is now overseeing his country's offensive as the head of military operations in eastern Ukraine – one of Ukraine's two main axes.
The latest MOD intelligence says: "In the north-east, Russian forces have attempted to push west through forests west of Kremina. Ukraine continues to resource significant effort around Russian-held Bakhmut" – where "Russian forces are likely fragile but holding for now".
"In the south, Ukraine continues to attack on at least two axes but is unlikely to have yet broken into Russia's primary defensive lines.
"In this area, Russia has likely implemented a shell-rationing regime for artillery in an attempt to preserve its critical indirect fire capability."
'Our people wait for victories. They need small victories'
US-supplied M777 howitzers are already in position around Bakhmut, with the capability to fire the shells.
The general added that the city's recapture would have more than just symbolic value, arguing Bakhmut's strategic importance – seen as a gateway to other key cities in the region.
Gen Syrskyi said: "Our people wait for victories. They need small victories."
In Kherson Oblast, the MOD intelligence says that "Ukraine maintains a small bridgehead on the left bank of the Dnipro River near the ruined Antonivsky Bridge which is an added challenge for Russian commanders who are likely concerned about the vulnerability of their south-western flank".