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Monday, March 20, 2023

Zaluzhnyi: Russia will try to capture Kyiv again, trains 200,000 new soldiers

by The Kyiv Independent news deskDecember 15, 2022 4:26 pm

Zaluzhnyi: Russia will try to capture Kyiv again, trains 200,000 new soldiersCommander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Lt Gen Valerii Zaluzhnyi delivers a speech during the commemorative event for the Debaltseve defenders in Askold's Grave Park, Kyiv, on Feb. 19, 2022. (Yuliia Ovsiannikova / Ukrinform/Future Publishing via Getty Images)

Russia is preparing for a new attack on Ukraine “as soon as January, but more likely in the spring,” seeking to push back Ukrainian forces and potentially making a second attempt to take Kyiv, Valerii Zaluzhnyi, commander-in-chief of Ukraine's Armed Forces, told the Economist.

“The Russians are preparing some 200,000 fresh troops. I have no doubt they will have another go at Kyiv,” said Zaluzhnyi, adding that Russia has a reserve of 1.2-1.5 million people.

Russian military can launch a major offensive from Donbas in the east, from the south, or from Belarus in the north of Ukraine, according to the head of the Ukrainian army.

Zaluzhnyi said that Russia “can be fought, it must be fought today, here and now,” but Ukraine needs more resources for it.

He added that Ukraine’s Armed Forces have enough servicemen, but they need more weapons. To be able to liberate all territories occupied by Russia since the beginning of the full-scale invasion on Feb. 24, Ukraine will need 300 tanks, about 700 infantry fighting vehicles, and 500 howitzers, according to the commander-in-chief.

Russia started the offensive on Kyiv as soon as the all-out war began in February. Though many predicted that Kyiv would be captured within days, the city didn't fall. About a month later, Russian troops were forced to withdraw from the areas surrounding Kyiv and the rest of the north of Ukraine. 

The Kyiv Independent news desk
The Kyiv Independent news desk

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