Winter weather has hampered fighting on the ground, and Volodymyr Zelenskyy has told Ukrainians to expect a major Russian barrage this week.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russian forces were trying to advance in the northeast and east and “planning something” in the south, while NATO sought on Wednesday to reassure other countries that fear destabilization from Moscow.
Ukraine’s General Staff said its forces had repelled six Russian attacks in the past 24 hours in the eastern Donbas region, while Russian artillery had relentlessly shelled the right bank of the Dnipro River and Kherson city in the south.
Winter weather has hampered fighting on the ground, and Zelenskyy has told Ukrainians to expect a major Russian barrage this week on Ukraine’s stricken electricity infrastructure, which Moscow has pounded roughly weekly since early October.
He said the Russian military was attacking the Donbas regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in the east as well as Kharkiv in the northeast, where Ukraine pushed back Russian forces in September.
“The situation at the front is difficult,” he said in his nightly video address. “Despite extremely large losses, the occupiers are still trying to advance” in Donetsk, Luhansk and Kharkiv. And “they are planning something in the south,” he said, without elaborating.
Reuters could not independently verify the latest battlefield reports.
Foreign ministers from the NATO alliance, including U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, were set to focus on helping fragile countries concerned about their own stability amid an energy crisis prompted by the Ukraine war.
Moldova, Georgia and Bosnia are all “facing pressure from Russia” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday.