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Commander: 'Critical phase' in Russia's war to come in next 2 months

by Kateryna Denisova May 10, 2024 4:42 PM 2 min read
Lieutenant General Oleksandr Pavliuk, who served as deputy defense minister since February 2023, was appointed as the head of Ukraine's Ground Forces by a presidential decree on Feb. 11, 2024. (Defense Ministry/Telegram)
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The "critical phase" in Russia's full-scale war against Ukraine will come in the next two months, Oleksandr Pavliuk, Ukraine's Ground Forces commander, said in an interview with The Economist published on May 10.

Pavliuk's statement echoed President Volodymyr Zelensky's words that Ukraine is facing a "new stage" in the all-out war as Russia is preparing to expand its offensive. Russian forces had begun a new offensive operation on May 10, targeting Kharkiv Oblast, Zelensky said.

Russia is likely trying to take as much territory as possible before the impact of the recently passed U.S. aid bill for Ukraine can be felt on the battlefield.

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War Notes

"Russia knows that if we receive enough weapons within a month or two, the situation could turn against them," Pavliuk said.

Chasiv Yar, a town in Donetsk Oblast, remains one of Russia's key targets as it could facilitate further advances toward the nearby cities of Kostiantynivka, Kramatorsk, and Sloviansk.

Russia aims to completely occupy Donetsk, Luhansk, and, if possible, Zaporizhzhia oblasts in 2024, Pavliuk said earlier.

Pavliuk told The Economist that Russia could continue to focus on Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts and is testing the stability of Ukraine's defense lines before choosing "the most suitable direction."

Media claim Russia captures 4 border villages in Kharkiv Oblast, governor says no ground lost
In turn, Kharkiv Oblast Governor Oleh Syniehubov said on national television on national television that no territory was lost at the moment. He clarified that settlements in the border areas are a “grey zone” and that active hostilities are ongoing there.
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