Ukraine plans a new counteroffensive

“We will stabilize the situation shortly,” said Oleksandr Pavliuk, appointed commander of the ground forces during the recent military reorganization.

Oleksandr Pavliuk, a senior Ukrainian military commander, said on Wednesday that Ukraine will stabilize the battlefield situation shortly and aims to form units for counteroffensive actions by the end of this year.

Ukrainian forces faced a setback after nine months of mostly stable fronts when the eastern city of Avdiivka fell into Russian hands in early February after months of devastating attacks.

Ukrainian troops were forced to abandon several settlements near the city due to Russia’s ongoing offensive amid their increasingly depleted ammunition reserves. Republicans in Congress have stalled a vital aid package from the United States.

“We will stabilize the situation shortly,” said Oleksandr Pavliuk, appointed commander of the ground forces during the recent military reorganization, in televised remarks. “We will do everything possible to prepare the troops for more active actions and take the initiative.”

“Our goal is to stabilize the front line, inflict the greatest damage (to the enemy), exactly what we are doing, and regroup to withdraw units that require restoration. (Withdraw units) to bases to form offensive groupings and carry out counteroffensive actions this year,” Oleksandr Pavliuk said.

He assured that the current work aimed to withdraw military units that lost their potential and restore them to later form a force for counteroffensive actions this year.

“We are successful. The situation is stabilizing. There are a couple of hot directions where the enemy concentrates its maximum forces: Avdiivka, Chasiv Yar direction, Terny towards Lyman; intense daily battles are taking place there, but our guys resist,” he said.

“I believe we will stabilize the situation shortly and do everything possible to prepare the troops for more active actions and take the initiative,” he added.

Meanwhile, at least five people have died this Wednesday as a result of a new series of Russian attacks on the port city of Odesa, some of them even during the official visit of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky alongside Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

This was confirmed by the spokesperson for the Ukrainian Naval Force, Dimitro Pletenchuk, shortly after Zelensky, in a joint press conference with the Greek prime minister, announced that the attacks had left victims.

“The enemy attacked the city’s port infrastructure. There are five dead. The number of wounded is being clarified,” Pletenchuk confirmed to the RBC agency.

For his part, Zelensky mentioned that during the past night, twenty drones were used to attack Odesa. “This is the true essence of Russia’s actions, constant terror,” so every Russian missile and plane shot down “is a saved human life,” he said, as reported by the Presidency.

“The vast majority of Russia’s targets are civilians. Houses and churches, infrastructure and schools, universities. All this needs to be restored,” said the Ukrainian president, who thanked Greece for its willingness to assist in this reconstruction.

Zelensky also announced that Ukraine and Greece are preparing a bilateral security agreement to be signed during the upcoming G7 summit in mid-June in Italy.

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