‘Mission completed’: Ukraine minister says warplanes on the way | Russia-Ukraine war News
Ukraine’s defense minister said Ukraine’s allies would agree to provide fighter jets to fight Russian forces, despite recent comments by Western leaders that fighters would not deployed.
Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov also said at a press conference on Sunday that Russia will launch a big attack in the coming weeks, but Ukraine has the troops and resources to repel such an attack.
He said the Ukrainian army would stop the operation even though tanks and other weapons systems from the West did not arrive in time.
“There will be more planes,” Reznikov predicted. “The question is what exactly… Let this quest be completed.”
So far, Ukraine has won support from the Baltic states and Poland in its bid to buy Western fighter jets. But some Western leaders have expressed concern that provide provocative fighters Kremlin and drag its nations deeper into a conflict that has claimed tens of thousands of lives and caused massive devastation.
Kyiv says such jets are needed to challenge Russia’s air superiority and ensure success in a Russian strike that Reznikov predicts could begin around the one-year anniversary. war, February 24.
“Not all Western weapons will arrive by that time, but we have the resources and reserves to help stabilize and sustain the offensive,” Reznikov told reporters.
Since the war began, Western officials have balked at some of Ukraine’s demands, such as long-range missiles and tanks, only to agree later. Fighter planes are the latest example.
‘The de facto NATO country’
Reznikov said Ukraine will not use long-range weapons as promised by the US to attack Russian territory and will only target Russian units in occupied Ukraine.
The United States confirmed on Friday that a new missile that doubles Ukraine’s strike range was included in a $2.2 billion U.S. military aid package to help Kyiv fend off rebels. Russia.
“We always officially tell our partners that we will not use weapons provided by foreign partners to fire on Russian territory. We only fired on Russian units on temporarily occupied Ukrainian territory,” he said.
German-made tanks are on their way to Ukraine. Reznikov says his forces will begin training on the tank Leopard 2 in Europe on Monday, before delivery to Ukraine. So far, Canada, Poland, Germany, the UK and the US have announced they will supply tanks to Ukraine.
The Kremlin has said that the supply of increasingly sophisticated weapons by Western countries will only prolong the conflict and it has described NATO as a direct participant in the war.
Reznikov, commenting on Western arms supplies and the state of Ukraine’s military, went further on Sunday, telling reporters: “I fully boldly declare that we have become a de facto NATO country. We have only a portion de jure left.”
Ukraine has applied to join NATO, as have Russia’s two other neighbors, Finland and Sweden.
‘Fight until the end’
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said fighting was raging in the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine as Russia stepped up pressure ahead of the one-year anniversary of its invasion of Ukraine.
“Things are very difficult in the Donetsk region – the battles are fierce,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly video address. “But no matter how difficult it is and no matter how much pressure we put on it, we still have to endure… We have no choice but to defend ourselves and win.”
Russia is increasing pressure to “make up for last year’s failures,” he said. We see it in different areas of the front and also in informational pressure.”
Donetsk Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said five civilians were wounded in rocket attacks in the city of Druzhkivka and the town of Avdiivka and its suburbs.
Heavy fighting is going on in Bakhmut. The head of Russia’s Wagner Mercenary Group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, said Ukrainian troops were not retreating and fighting continued in northern areas of the eastern city.
Prigozhin said in a statement: “Fighting battles are being fought on every street, every house, every stairway. “Ukrainian armed forces are fighting to the last man.”
Kharkiv regional governor Oleh Syniehubov said four people were injured when a Russian S-300 missile crashed near an apartment complex in the city of Kharkiv and another was injured when the missile hit a university building.