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Ukrainian President on Armed Forces' withdrawal from Avdiivka: 'Fair and professional decision'

Ukrainian President on Armed Forces' withdrawal from Avdiivka: 'Fair and professional decision' Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo: RBC-Ukraine, Vitalii Nosach)

During the Munich Security Conference, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated that Ukraine could win the war against Russia, but the range and sufficiency of weaponry limit its actions. The situation in Avdiivka confirms this. At the same time, the decision to withdraw from the city was logical and professional to save soldiers' lives.

Ukraine's actions are limited by available weaponry

"Ukraine can win. Our actions are limited only by the range and sufficiency of means of attack. But this depends not only on us. The situation in Avdiivka confirms this. Unfortunately, keeping Ukraine in an artificial deficit of weapons, particularly in a deficit of artillery and long-range weaponry, allows Putin (Vladimir Putin, the Russian dictator) to adapt to the intensity of combat," the President said.

Zelenskyy noted that weakening democracy only undermines joint capabilities, where Russia's sole advantage lies in the devaluation of human lives and constant meat grinder assaults.

The decision to withdraw from Avdiivka was fair and professional

"Absolutely logical, fair, and professional decision (to withdraw from Avdiivka). To save our people is our top priority. We cherish our people, our soldiers - because this is protection. Weapons from our partners help restore peace in our territory, but military protection of people comes first. Therefore, to avoid being encircled, the decision to retreat to other positions was made," the President said.

The head of the country emphasized that withdrawing from Avdiivka does not mean Russia has captured anything. Over two years of war, the terrorist country only destroyed small villages, towns, and the lives of Ukrainians.

According to the President, the enemy attacked Avdiivka with all its weapons and full force since October 2023, resulting in the deaths of thousands of occupiers.

"Exhausting their army, I believe that our military constantly fulfills this task. Then, there will be restoration; we will wait for the weapons lacking. There is no long-range weaponry. Russia has it, and we have little of it. We rely on the support of our partners," the President added.

Battle for Avdiivka

The Russian army began an offensive on Avdiivka at the beginning of October. According to British intelligence, Avdiivka remains Russia's main direction on the front.

Later, the Third Separate Assault Brigade confirmed that they had been redeployed to the Avdiivka area to reinforce Ukrainian defenses. Defenders showed footage from the city and noted that the fighting on this front is more challenging than that in Bakhmut.

Yesterday, on February 16, the commander of the Tavria Operational Strategic Group, Oleksandr Tarnavskyi, announced the decision to withdraw from the Zenit position on the southeast outskirts of Avdiivka. Later, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Oleksandr Syrskyi, stated that our soldiers had left the city to avoid being surrounded by the enemy.