Defense Minister Reznikov addresses Ukraine's Armed Forces following Moscow’s further invasion

22 February 2022, 04:22 PM

Russia will no longer be able to maintain plausible deniability and lie to the world about its war on Ukraine, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said in a formal address to the countrys armed forces on Feb. 22.

Reznikov said Russia’s recognition of the non-government-controlled areas of Ukrainian Donbas as independent “republics,” made it clear the Kremlin was engaged in a war against Ukraine.

“The fog of confusing ambiguity is gone; the whole world now sees what we’ve known for eight years,” the minister said.

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“Thanks to your courage, selflessness, and professionalism, (we) thwarted the designs of the enemy, who waged a sordid, sneaky war all these years, hiding behind women and children.”

Reznikov said that after years of engaging in hybrid warfare against the civilian population of Donbas, Russia has finally “shown its true face – the face of a criminal who seeks to hold the free world hostage.”

He added that thanks to Ukrainian soldiers, the international community has finally realized the “true price of avoiding honest answers.”

“The Kremlin has taken another step towards restoring the Soviet Union; (together) with a new Warsaw Pact and Berlin Wall,” said Reznikov.

“Our choice is plain: defending our country, our homes, our families.”

Reznikov said that it will soon become clear which of Ukraine’s international partners are “true friends, of which we will have more” as opposed to “those, who spent a number of years telling us to surrender.”

On a more somber note, the minister said that “trying times” are ahead on Ukraine’s path to victory.

“There will be losses; we will have to push through pain and overcome our fears and gloom,” he said.

“We are on our own land, and truth is on our side; Ukrainian army has the support of the people.”

“Our military and political leadership is currently doing everything to bolster our defenses; in particular – to make the fullest use of the assistance from our partners.”

Echoing the earlier address to the nation by Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky, Reznikov urged military service members to “keep a cool head” and avoid “emotional” lurching towards “chaotic decisions.”

On Feb. 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Russia’s recognition of the non-government-controlled areas of Ukrainian Donbas as independent “republics.”

According to Zelensky, this move signifies Moscow “unilaterally abandoning” the peace process as outlined by the Minsk Protocol of 2014.

The EU’s foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell criticized Russia’s actions and expressed support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

U.S. President Joe Biden has signed an executive order, introducing economic sanctions against the Donbas territories that Moscow now recognizes as independent.

Germany said that Russia “has dealt a heavy blow to the peace process,” and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stated that he was halting the certification process for the Nord Stream-2 pipeline, rendering it unable to begin operations.

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