Ukraine conflict: Russians have “pretty much turned and fled” claims former British army chief
British army chief Lord Dannatt said that Ukraine had pulled off an “operational surprise” by suggesting a counter offensive in the south, but made significant inroads with a targeted offensive in Kharkiv.
He added that while this is a “great success” for the Ukrainians, he said they continue to need “more and more” Western arms and ammunition in order to be able to “keep the pressure up”.
“We are witnessing some incredible scenes,” he told Sky News.
“Although the Ukrainians have made significant advances, there’s a lot of their country still in Russian occupation. So there’s a long way to go.”
The Ukrainian military claims it has forced Russian forces from more than 20 towns and villages in the past 24 hours as part of a counter offensive according to a Facebook post by the Ukraine general staff.
The success of Ukrainian forces in pushing Russian troops out of the Kharkiv region “have significant implications for Russia’s overall operational design”, according to the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) and for the morale of its soldiers on the ground.
In an intelligence update, the MoD said “The majority of the force in Ukraine is highly likely being forced to prioritise emergency defensive actions.
“The already limited trust deployed troops have in Russia’s senior military leadership is likely to deteriorate further.”
It added: “In the south, near Kherson, Russia is likely struggling to bring sufficient reserves forward across the Dnipro River to the front line.
"An improvised floating bridge Russia started over two weeks ago remains incomplete; Ukrainian long-range artillery is now probably hitting crossings of the Dnipro so frequently that Russia cannot carry out repairs to damaged road bridges.”
In his nightly address to the nation, President Zelensky said that although the Kremlin was trying to deprive his people of “gas, light, water and food”, it would not succeed in defeating them.
He added: “History will put everything in its place. And we will be with gas, light, water and food … and WITHOUT you!”