Ukraine's Ambassador to NATO Natalia Halibarenko said that allies should have realistic expectations about the upcoming counteroffensive in an interview with Lithuanian media outlet LRT on May 18.
Halibarenko told LRT that it was "very good" that the details of Ukraine's long-awaited counteroffensive – including when, how and in what direction it would take place – were unknown.
Given that the delicate nature of the information put lives at stake, it was important to trust in Ukraine's military leadership, she explained.
The counteroffensive is seen as a critical juncture to take back Ukrainian territory under Russian control, and failure to do so could lead to western allies pushing Ukrainians to the negotiating table with Russia.
However, Halibarenko stressed that it was important to understand that "one counteroffensive cannot determine the course of the entire war" and that it could take "several counteroffensives" to reach that point.
"We are now telling our international partners: be patient, don't push too hard. Now it is more important to think about what else can be done to make this counteroffensive successful," Halibarenko said.