Ukrainian counteroffensive could begin in summer, PM says
Denys Shmyhal (Photo:REUTERS/Viacheslav Ratynskyi)
The much-anticipated major Ukrainian counteroffensive may begin as late as summer, Ukrainian PM Denys Shmyhal said in an interview with U.S. newspaper The Hill on April 11.
He stressed that Kyiv’s allies are not pressuring Ukraine to begin the operation any sooner than it’s ready.
“All of our friends and partners do comprehend clearly that in order to go into counteroffensive, one must be 100 percent, and even more percent prepared to do so,” said Shmyhal.
Furthermore, the PM said the recent leak of classified Pentagon documents will not affect the ongoing preparations, reiterating that Ukraine is confident it will liberate its territory from Russian occupation.
“We have proven multiple times that we can do it,” he added.
“From our international partners we ask for more military capabilities, like tanks, ammunition, planes, armored vehicles.”
Shmyhal departed for Canada on April 11, planning a visit to the United States afterwards.
Deputy Ukrainian Defense Minister Hanna Maliar earlier said that any official communications about the planned counteroffensive must come from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valerii Zaluzhnyi, or Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov.
Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) secretary Oleksiy Danilov previously said that elevated media attention paid to the planned operation is detrimental to Ukraine’s Armed Forces, urging the public to not expect any “magical dates” that would suddenly turn the tide of the conflict.
According to Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, the counteroffensive is expected to begin in April-May, along several axes simultaneously.
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