Ukraine will continue counteroffensive in winter. Photo/Anadolu
WASHINGTON – Ukraine will continue its counteroffensive against Russian forces throughout the fall and winter. This was stated by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky.
He spoke to US news agencies after meetings at the White House and on Capitol Hill.
Zelensky stressed that the offensive against Russia’s defense lines, which began in early June, would continue regardless of the weather, and claimed that Russian troops wanted a “pause” in the fighting.
“We will do everything not to stop during the difficult days of autumn with bad weather, and in winter,” Zelensky said.
The Ukrainian leader also promised to “eliminate the occupation of two more cities,” although he declined to identify potential targets and gave no time frame.
“I won’t tell you what city, sorry. So we have a plan. A very, very comprehensive plan,” he claimed.
Zelensky further vowed to take control of Artyomovsk (known as Bakhmut in Ukrainian), which was captured by Russian forces earlier this year after months of heavy fighting.
Kiev launched its long-heralded counteroffensive against Russian forces in early June. The fiercest fighting took place in Ukraine’s former Zaporozhye Region, which was incorporated into Russia last fall after a referendum.
The counteroffensive failed to produce any real results, and Ukrainian troops reportedly had difficulty even breaking through the forward defense lines set up by Russia.
Heavy fighting has resulted in heavy losses of personnel and equipment in Kiev. Russian President Vladimir Putin recently gave an estimate of Ukrainian losses at more than 71,000 troops, nearly 550 tanks and about 18,000 other types of combat vehicles.