Putin clarifies Russia’s main objective in Ukraine

The Russian president said that the liberation of Donbass remains the key objective

Russia’s plan for its military operation in Ukraine has not changed, and the main goal remains to liberate the entire territory of the two Donbass republics, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday. The statement comes amid an ongoing counter-offensive from Kyiv.

“There are no adjustments to the plan. The General Staff makes operational decisions during the campaign as to what is considered a key objective,” Putin told reporters on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan.

“The main goal is the liberation of the entire territory of Donbass. This work continues, despite the counterattack attempts of the Ukrainian army,” added the Russian president.

Putin stressed that the Russian military continues to do “incremental” advance in the Donbass itself. He also said that Moscow is “not in a hurry” in Ukraine.

Commenting on “kyiv Security Pact”presented by Ukraine this week, the Russian president noted that the two countries had worked out a set of security guarantees and conditions to end the conflict in March during the Istanbul talks – but then kyiv withdrew from Table.

“Now they say they don’t want any deal with Russia, but want to win on the battlefield. Well, flag in hand, “ Putin said, using a Russian idiom to ironically wish someone success in a hopeless endeavour.

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Putin warns of a more serious response in Ukraine

Although his spokesman Dmitry Peskov described kyiv’s proposal as proof that Russia is under threat from NATO, Putin said he wanted to wait and see what the Ukrainians actually come up with, because “their position on almost every issue changes almost daily.”

The West plans to dismantle Russia – and has had such plans for decades – the president noted, but one of the reasons the special military operation began is that some Western countries decided to use the Ukraine to achieve this.

Moscow responded “with moderation” to Ukrainian “terrorist attacks” against civilian infrastructure and officials, including targeting nuclear facilities inside Russia, Putin said. Such behavior is unacceptable, and if Ukraine continues on this path, the Russian response will be “worse” than the recent “sensitive strikes” which represented a kind of warning, added the Russian president.


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