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10 Apr, 2024 07:25

Zelensky pledges another counteroffensive

The Ukrainian president says he is determined to recapture territory which is now part of Russia
Zelensky pledges another counteroffensive

New deliveries of Western military technology can enable Kiev to launch a new counteroffensive against Russia, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky believes.

Ukraine’s leader made the same claim last year before Kiev’s failed attempt to recapture land lost to Moscow in 2022.

While his forces are presently being pushed back on the battlefield, Zelensky hopes to turn the tide, he told the German tabloid Bild this week.

“Russia has more men, more weapons. But the West has modern weapons systems,” Zelensky mused. “If we get [production] licenses from our partners, then it’s not about the number of people. It’s about the quality of the weapons.”

Kiev already has a plan for a new counteroffensive against Russia, Zelensky said, indicating that it depends on the US resuming military assistance to his country and the West in general helping Ukraine ramp up domestic military production.

Last year, Ukraine attempted a counteroffensive; Western-trained and armed troops were expected to break through Russian defensive lines and score a major victory. However, they only managed negligible territorial gains at the cost of tens of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers and depleted their arms stockpiles. Russia estimated Ukrainian military losses between early June and late October, 2023 at roughly 90,000 troops, 600 tanks and 1,900 other armored vehicles.

The Zelensky government maintains that it cannot negotiate with Russia as long as President Vladimir Putin remains in power and would not accept any outcome of the conflict that doesn’t entail the full restoration of Ukraine’s pre-2014 borders.

A profile of the Ukrainian leader published by Time magazine last November said that his faith in Ukraine prevailing was “immovable, verging on the messianic.” Some of his aides perceived it as delusional, they told the news outlet.

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