Putin Calls Russia’s Military Operations in Ukraine Running Smoothly. PHOTOS/Reuters
MOSCOW – President of Russia Vladimir Putin said that military operations in Ukraine has gained positive momentum. He also hopes his army will deliver more victories after Russia claims control of the eastern Ukrainian salt-mining town of Soledar.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24 sparked one of Europe’s deadliest conflicts since World War II and the biggest confrontation between Moscow and the West since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
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Russia says its troops have captured Soledar, a rare success for Moscow after months of losing on the battlefield.
“The dynamics are positive,” Putin told state television Rossiya 1 when asked about Soledar’s take. “Everything is developing within the framework of the plans of the Ministry of Defense and the General Staff,” he continued, as quoted by Reuters, Sunday (15/1/2023).
“And I hope that our fighters will please us even more with the results of their battles,” said Putin.
Putin now perceives the war in Ukraine as an existential battle with an aggressive and arrogant West. He said that Russia would use all available means to protect itself and its people from any aggressor.
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A regional governor in Ukraine said on Saturday that Ukrainian troops were still struggling to maintain control of Soledar. The Washington-based Institute for the Study of War said it was highly unlikely that Ukrainian forces were still holding positions inside Soledar itself. Reuters could not immediately verify the situation in Soledar.
Even though the West has imposed unprecedented sanctions on Russia over the war in Ukraine, the world’s largest resource-producing economy is showing signs of stabilizing.
Putin said Russia was now turning its back on the West and would trade with Asian powers like China and India. “The economic situation is stable. Much better than not only what our opponents predicted, but also what we expected,” he explained.
Putin said unemployment was a leading indicator. “Unemployment is at a historic low. Inflation was lower than expected and, most importantly, has a downward trend,” Putin said.
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