Ukrainian President Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Thursday he believed Russia had already begun the planned offensive in the east, but also noted that it was a “complicated” situation.
“The frontline situation is complicated,” he said in an interview with Fox News’ Trey Yingst. “Russia is preparing for the rematch. We can feel it.”
“I think it has already started or not completely. We will see that in the next few weeks,” added Zelenskyy.
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Defense officials have sounded the alarm that Russia is planning a major offensive to try to turn the tide of the war in Ukraine after failing to make major progress for months and losing territory to from September with the liberation of Kharkiv.
Details of the offensive remain unclear, and fighting in Donbas and Kherson has remained relatively constant for weeks, with no escalations or major advances on either side.
But even as the war nears the one-year mark, Zelenskyy said morale remains high among soldiers and citizens.
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“For over a year, we’ve had this war and people are exhausted. But there’s still this resilience of our soldiers,” he told Fox News. “It’s important to have resilience. Among people, there is this high level of morale.”
Western defense officials are scrambling to funnel defensive aid to Ukraine, and hundreds of tanks long requested by Kyiv have been pledged by several countries, including the United States.
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However, key defensive aids such as tanks and Patriot missile battery systems are expected to take months before they can be used on Ukraine’s front lines – well beyond when Russia is expected to strike again. Ukraine with renewed vigor.
But Zelenskyy says his troops are ready and Ukraine has a plan to counter the Russian offensive, although details on a defensive strategy remain limited.