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Zelensky: Ukraine still capable of battlefield achievements despite frustration

by Lance Luo November 9, 2023 1:07 AM 2 min read
President Volodymyr Zelensky on Nov. 4, 2023 in Kyiv, Ukraine. (Viktor Kovalchuk/Global Images Ukraine via Getty Images)
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President Volodymyr Zelensky reassured audiences at the Reuters Next conference in New York on Nov. 8 that Ukraine is still on track to deliver military results by the end of the year.

"We have a plan. We have very concrete cities, very [concrete] directions where we go. I can't share all the details but we have some slow steps forward on the south, also we have steps on the east," he said.

Ukraine’s highly anticipated southern counteroffensive has experienced significant challenges while Zelensky’s leadership is being increasingly scrutinized.

Earlier this month, commander-in-chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi admitted that the war had reached a World War I-type stalemate. The president rebuffed these remarks in a rare public dispute.

Some fear political infighting could result from cracks in the president’s image as calls for fresh presidential elections in 2024 emerge.

“Everyone should be concentrating their efforts right now on defending the country,” Zelensky told followers in his nightly address on Nov. 6, also suggesting that no elections would be held.

“Put themselves together and do not rest; do not drown in infighting or other issues. The situation is now the same as it was before — if there is no victory, there will be no country.”

Zelensky told the Reuters audience that Nov. 8 was a "successful day" for Ukraine after the European Commission recommended opening EU accession negotiations with Ukraine.

Southern counteroffensive runs out of steam as West scrambles to deliver aid
As fall weather arrives, observers are looking at the status of Ukraine’s three-pronged counteroffensive, which continues to move very slowly. Ukrainian forces have yet to fully break through Russia’s defensive lines and fight to their target cities — Tokmak, Berdiansk, and Vasylivka. Their tempo i…
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