Despite setbacks, Ukraine not retreating in war, says Zelenskyy

Written by Jeppe W

Dec.01 - 2023 10:35 AM CET


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In a recent interview with AP, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy candidly discussed the outcomes of Ukraine's counteroffensive against Russian forces.

He acknowledged that the campaign didn't achieve the breakthroughs hoped for during the summer and autumn, but emphasized that Ukraine is not retreating.

Zelenskyy expressed a mix of satisfaction and dissatisfaction, particularly regarding the loss of lives and the lack of sufficient weaponry from allies.

Despite the challenges, Ukraine has seen some positive developments, including territorial gains and a successful strike on the headquarters of the Russian occupiers in Crimea.

The creation of a temporary grain corridor for safe exports is another achievement Zelenskyy highlighted.

Looking forward, Zelenskyy is focusing on increasing domestic arms production, a move he believes will significantly impact the war's direction.

A substantial portion of Ukraine's budget is being directed towards this effort. However, Zelenskyy noted the current production levels are not sufficient and hopes for financial support from Western allies, particularly the U.S., in terms of loans and contracts.

Zelenskyy believes that a militarily self-sufficient Ukraine is a major deterrent to Russia. The AP report mentioned that the counteroffensive has been supported by significant military aid and heavy weapons from Western nations.

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Valerii Zaluzhnyi, commented that the war is evolving into a "positional" struggle characterized by static and exhausting battles.

He stressed the need for high technology to win, cautioning against a protracted trench war if technological advancements are not achieved. Ukraine initially had an advantage with drone technology, but Russia has since increased its production, leading to a technological stalemate.

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