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Russians want to fully capture Luhansk Oblast before Putin's sham elections – Ukraine's intelligence

Wednesday, 21 February 2024, 18:06
Russians want to fully capture Luhansk Oblast before Putin's sham elections – Ukraine's intelligence
Vadym Skibitskyi. Photo: Defence Intelligence of Ukraine

Defence Intelligence of Ukraine believes that the Russians will try to reach the administrative borders of Luhansk Oblast before the so-called presidential elections in Russia scheduled for 15-17 March. 

Source: Vadym Skibitskyi, representative of Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine

Quote: "Before the elections, they want to reach at least the administrative borders of Luhansk Oblast. To have at least some success, something like Avdiivka, maybe somewhere else on some other front.

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There are key points: Kupiansk, Lyman and Avdiivka. Why Kupiansk and Lyman? To show that they have supposedly managed to return the territories that Ukraine liberated after the start of full-scale aggression. It would be symbolic. This is an element that would be used very actively in information and psychological operations, actions, and the information space."

Details: Skibitskyi said that the Russians' task for the next six months is to reach the administrative borders of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts and hold the seized territories.

In addition, the Russians have captured part of Kherson oblast and part of Zaporizhzhia oblast, and they will try to hold them because they need a land corridor to Crimea: "They need a logistics system that goes through Crimea to bring ammunition, equipment and personnel to the south."

Skibitskyi added that Ukraine is destroying large landing ships and they no longer carry anything: "If there are four or five of them left, they will also be sunk."

Skibitskyi said the Russians’ task is to keep the territories they have seized under control: "Holding means active defence or pushing us back to the positions from which we started our offensive."

That is why it is important for Ukraine to have reserves and support from our partners and develop its production: "This nature of the Russian Federation's actions, with the loud name of 'offensive', implies a protracted war. A war of attrition."

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