Sunday, 26 May 2024 05:01

What to know after Day 822 of Russia-Ukraine war

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We must stay a step ahead of the enemy – Putin

Russia “must always be one step ahead” of its adversaries and should maintain its technological advantage in order to “guarantee” victory, President Vladimir Putin has said.

The president made the remarks on Saturday as he visited the headquarters of the Tactical Missiles Corporation, a major state-owned defense company located outside Moscow. While at the facility, Putin held a meeting with the CEOs of Russia’s leading defense corporations. 

Gaining even a slim technological advantage has a drastic impact on the battlefield, the president stated, referring to what has been learned from the Ukraine conflict. 

“I would like to emphasize that we must always be one step ahead. We have to always be one step ahead of the adversary, and then victory will be guaranteed. You know this,” he said. 

“Your specialists and you personally always remain in touch with our men fighting on the line of contact without sparing themselves to defend Russia’s interests. Whenever we manage to get an edge, no matter how slim it is, this increases our effectiveness manyfold,” Putin added.

The country’s defense industry, which has been booming amid the hostilities, must not only become more efficient in meeting the needs of the military, but also diversify and become more involved in civilian manufacturing, according to Putin.

“Delivering on this systemic objective is instrumental for streamlining the defense sector’s manufacturing potential and helping talented professionals advance their careers. Overall, this would create a more sustainable footing for defense manufacturers by offering them a solid economic and financial foundation in the long run,” he explained.

The president also touched upon the civilian crowd-funded military manufacturers that have emerged amid the hostilities. The solutions they offer – such as radio-electronic warfare devices or sophisticated drones – must be fast-tracked for adoption by the military, the president said. 

“We must also be effective when using assets supplied by the so-called grassroots defense manufacturing sector. We must enable it to develop and expand its manufacturing operations, and introduce a fast-track procedure for supplying its most effective solutions to the army,” Putin stated.



Zelenskiy says Ukrainian forces now control area where Russia pushed into Kharkiv region

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Friday that Ukrainian forces had secured "combat control" of areas where Russian troops staged an incursion this month in northern parts of Kharkiv region.

"Our soldiers have now managed to take combat control of the border area where the Russian occupiers entered," Zelenskiy said in his nightly video address.

Zelenskiy's comments, after holding a meeting of military and regional officials in Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city, appeared to be at variance with comments by Russian officials.

Viktor Vodolatskiy, a member of Russia's State Duma lower house of parliament, was quoted by Tass news agency as saying Russian forces controlled more than half the territory of the town of Vovchansk, 5 km (three miles) inside the border.

Vodolatskiy was quoted as saying that once Vovchansk was secured, Russian forces would target three cities in Ukraine's eastern Donetsk region -- Sloviansk, Kramatorsk and Pokrovsk.

Reuters was unable to verify independently battlefield accounts from either side.

Russian forces pushed into border regions of Ukraine's Kharkiv region this month and Russia's Defence Ministry said they had secured control of about 12 settlements.

Zelenskiy and other Ukrainian officials had been reporting success in "stabilising" the area.

The Ukrainian military's General Staff, in its evening report on Friday said the situation in Vovchansk was "tense but controlled by the defence forces".

"The Russian army today launched air terror against this town -- eight guided bombs hit the town," it said. Attacks were launched on at least two other settlements north of Kharkiv.

A late-night report by the General Staff said Ukrainian forces had repelled 10 Russian attacks in the area, including around Vovchansk.

It also noted Russian forces had achieved "partial success" in areas near Kupiansk, further east in Kharkiv region, and the Pokrovsk sector where heavy fighting has been taking place further south in Donetsk region.

Ukrainian military bloggers said Ukrainian troops had been holding their ground around Vovchansk and Russian forces were using less infantry in the area and instead firing from a distance, with limited accuracy.



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