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Zelenskyy says Russia holds initiative on front, but Ukraine will stop it upon receiving arms

Zelenskyy says Russia holds initiative on front, but Ukraine will stop it upon receiving arms President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Vitalii Nosach, RBC-Ukraine)

Ukraine will be able to stop the Russian offensive in the east if the arms supplies increase, says President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at a joint press conference with the President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola.

"With increased arms supplies, we will be able to stop them (the Russian troops - ed.) in the east. They have the initiative there now. This is not a secret. We need to stop them, take the initiative into our own hands. It is possible only when you have something strong in your hands," the president said.

Zelenskyy adds that the command understands the names and quantities of everything the military needs. There is also an estimate of how many soldiers need to be taken out to give them a rest. Rotations continue, and there are plans for them.

"But besides these strong brigades that are being taken out, we need to bring in completed brigades. Not just strong guys, but strong guys with no bare hands. Mechanized brigades, powerful brigades," Zelenskyy said.

The president notes that there are supplies to Ukraine, however, these are not the volumes that were voted for. But as soon as the Defense Forces receive what they need, they will stop Russia's initiative in the east.

"Of course, taking advantage of this moment, they (the Russian troops - ed.) have increased their troops in the north, in the east, and certainly everywhere. They are increasing something everywhere. We also see troops that may be in one direction or another. Speaking without any details, the main thing is we know, we see the number and we know that they are not doing as well as they thought," the president said.

Frontline situation

The hottest areas of the frontline are as follows:

  • Donetsk region: Chasiv Yar, Pokrovske and Kurakhove directions;
  • Kharkiv region: Kupiansk direction.

Zelenskyy warned that Russian forces plan to occupy Chasiv Yar by May 9, or Vladimir Putin's visit to China. If Ukrainian soldiers succeed in repelling the offensive, it will also spoil Russia's plans for a counteroffensive in the summer.

At the end of April, the commander of the National Guard of Ukraine, Oleksandr Pivnenko, said that Russia was preparing unpleasant surprises in unexpected directions.