The advances of the Ukrainian counteroffensive in recent days are clear, with the reconquest of almost 6 thousand square kilometers (km²) of territories in the south and east of the country. Analysts consider it a turning point in the Ukraine-Russia conflict, particularly with Russian nationalists and Vladimir Putin supporters harshly criticizing the Kremlin’s military strategy. Yet there are no signs that the war is close to ending.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy announced on Monday night that since the counteroffensive began this month, the Ukrainian army has reconquered nearly 6,000 square kilometers of territory controlled by Russian forces.
“Since the beginning of September, our military has liberated almost 6,000 km² of Ukrainian territory in the east and south, and we are still advancing,” Zelensky said in a video posted on social media.
If consolidated, these gains are Ukraine’s biggest since the withdrawal of Russian forces from outside Kiev in late March. The main focus, at the moment, of the Ukrainian counteroffensive is Kharkiv, where they intend to take full control of the province. In this region, the Ukrainians have already advanced 50 kilometers towards the border with Russia, and the British Ministry of Defense even admits an order to withdraw Russian troops.
Russian troops would have already left behind stockpiles of ammunition and other weapons during the withdrawal from Kharkiv, such as mines, grenades, missiles and various combat vehicles. , last week, in the region of Kharkiv, bordering Russia, in the northeast of the country, forcing Russian soldiers to retreat to other positions. In addition, Ukrainian authorities have reported success in the Russian-occupied Kherson region in the south and on the border with annexed Crimea and eastern regions under the control of pro-Russian separatists since 2014.
In the same video statement, Zelenskiy again suggested that Russia be declared a “terrorist state” for practicing radioactive, energy and famine terror during the war. The Ukrainian head of state also defended that Ukraine needs to strengthen “cooperation with the international community to defeat Russian terror”.
For the Ukrainian president, Russia promotes “radiation terror” at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, for the “presence of troops in the factory, the constant provocations and the bombing of the territory that put Ukraine and Europe on the brink of a radioactive disaster”.
Moscow denies these accusations and, on Monday (12), said that the Ukrainian army was preparing a “major offensive” to try to recover the plant. According to the spokesman for the pro-Russian governor of Zaporizhzhia, Vladimir Rogov, the Ukrainian army is moving artillery elements, including howitzers (cannons) and multiple launch systems, to the area. Rogov said that Ukraine is in the process of preparing “a major offensive in the nuclear power plant region, according to the Russian news agency TASS.
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Translated to english by RJ983
From Brazil, by EBC News