Demynsk offensive operation 1942, 7.1-20.5.
The task for Soviet forces-surround and destroy German grouping in area Demynsk. Coming in conditions of wood-marshland at a deep snow cover the Soviet forces at 25.2 have finished an encirclement of six German divisions of 16th Fild Army. Liquidation of them was delayed because of lack of forces. On April 23, Germans managed to break through front of an encirclement and liquidated so-called "Ramushsky corridor". The further attempts of the Soviet armies to liquidate Demynsk Grouping have not brought success.
The break at the southeast bank of the Ilmen lake was intercepted Germans in the west direction in area Staraya Russa, but had complete success in the southern direction. The great Soviet forces, with which 16th German Army almost nothing could oppose, have laid to themselves on a way to the southwest of a valley of river Lovat. This Soviet formations together with forces, going from area of city Holm from the north, February 8, encirclemented six German divisions of 2nd and 10th Army Corps, having formed Demynsk encirclement. About 100.000 German soldiers were necessary supply during several months only by air.
With the purpose to exempt the surrounded divisions, German forces have begun offensive from area to the southwest of Staraya Russa. German Command has generated at Staraya Russa five special shock divisions (5th, 122th, 329th and other) under command of general - lieutenant Val'ter fon Zeydlits and on March 21, has sent its in counteroffensive. Having made the way through Soviet defensive lines and after week's fight have made the way through 40-kilometer corridor persistently defended by the Soviet forces. April 20, communication with the surrounded German divisions was restored.
City Holm, in which 281th German Division on January 21, was surrounded and supply by air, kept in city several months in even more difficult position, being a unique German strong point between Demynsk encirclement and Velikie Luki. In the Holm city, five-thousandth garrison was surrounded by forces of Soviet 3rd Shock Army. Only on May 5, 122th German Division have broken to city.
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