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Putin is massing forces for a major offensive in the east

Putin is massing forces for a major offensive in the east

More atrocities await

Putin is massing his forces for a major offensive in eastern Ukraine

Berlin / Lviv.While Ukraine’s western partners promise to increase arms supplies in response to the atrocities, Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing for an upcoming military strike.

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Drive in a circle with a radius of 400 km Russian ground forces withdrew around Kyiv over its territory to the starting point for another possible attack. From there, NATO expects a major offensive in eastern Ukraine with some newly equipped Russian soldiers.

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There is still no final clarity on Putin’s goals: whether he will declare victory and seek a negotiated solution as early as May after a more brutal attack, or – NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has warned – “several months or even years” to quarrel. Note: Military experts told dpa that Russian forces should not count on a quick victory even with their second attempt, but will likely continue to shoot mercilessly at civilians and infrastructure.

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Balance of power between Russian and Ukrainian forces ‘fundamentally wrong’

German Brigadier General Christian Freuding, head of the Ukrainian Situation Center in the Ministry of Defense and commander of the Panzerlehrbrigade 9 in Münster, points out a fundamental problem. There was an “excessive exhaustion of the Russian forces”, Freuding puts it in the Bundeswehr formula “#demand”. “When attacking, we are talking about a strength ratio of one to three if the attack is to be promising. So concretely: we need a Russian three-way superiority over the Ukrainian defender.” “And if we go into local combat and house to house, we assume proportions of 1:8 to 1:10.” But if you look at Russian and Ukrainian forces from this perspective, “the balance of power is basically correct for a Russian victory not.”

However, Western aid to Ukraine has also become a race against time. This may also explain the stark undertones of Ukrainian diplomacy, which sees the federal government primarily acting under public pressure. In March, the US Congress passed a budget that allocated $13.6 billion in humanitarian, economic, and military aid to Ukraine.

Attacks on supply lines in Kyiv

The Russian army continues its attacks on the supply lines of Ukrainian units in eastern Ukraine. For example, the Lozova railway junction in the Kharkiv region was attacked by missiles and the tracks were destroyed. In the Dnipropetrovsk region, fuel depots and factories are exposed to missiles almost every day. In other parts of the country as well, tanks of diesel, gasoline and lubricants have become targets for missile attacks. Two oil refineries in Poltava and Odessa It had to be completely destroyed.

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Stoltenberg: NATO will increase aid to Ukraine

After consultations with foreign ministers, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that the country should be able to withstand Russian aggression.

According to Ukrainian information, some forces that Russia has already deployed in eastern Ukraine are stationed around the occupied city of Izyum in the Kharkiv region. The goal is to advance towards the city of Slovjansk in the Donetsk region. Similar reinforcements of Russian units were observed in the neighboring Luhansk region. Russian forces intensified the bombing of the cities of Sevgirodontsk, Rubyshyn, and Lysechhansk, which remained under Ukrainian control.

Russia is pushed to the south

The region’s governor, Serhi Hajjaj, expects the Russian offensive to begin early in the weekend and pressure the remaining civilians to reach safety in the interior of the country using buses and trains that are still waiting. “I think they are already planning to finish bringing in all the reserves and in three to four days they will try to attack,” he said on Wednesday.

To the south, Ukrainian forces apparently pushed Russian units on the borders of Dnipropetrovsk and Kherson Oblasts to the south. It appears that there are no major offensive efforts by Russian forces in this area. It seems that all Russian forces are focused on the final capture of the port city of Mariupol on the Sea of ​​Azov The encirclement of the Ukrainian army units in the Donbass.

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Russia’s return to the North? “You don’t have the strength to do that.”

“From Donetsk and Luhansk and from Izyum to Holyipol, he is trying to close the circle around our forces,” Ukrainian military expert Oleh Zhdanov said on Ukrainian television about the plan of the Russian opponent. However, the two shock groups are still separated by approximately 250 individuals. kilometers of roads.

Zhdanov ruled out the return of the Russians to the North for the time being: “They do not have the necessary strength for this.” All available soldiers and operational military technology are transferred to eastern Ukraine. And Zhdanov asserts: “If we do not succeed in the east, then it will not make sense to bring the remaining remains to northern Ukraine.” If the Russians succeed in the Donbass, the question of the occupation of the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv and the capital Kyiv will arise again.

RND / dpa

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