In response to Moscow’s announcement of referendums in Donetsk and Luhansk in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine to join Russia, as well as Kherson and the Zaporizhia region, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky saw that the situation of the battle fronts clearly tilted in favor of his forces.
In a video address published early Wednesday, according to local time, he added that the situation on the front line with Russian forces clearly shows that the initiative is with Kyiv.
Referendums on joining Russia
This came one day after Russia-appointed leaders in 4 Ukrainian regions announced plans to hold referendums on joining Moscow, a move that could escalate the war sharply, while it met with widespread Western rejection.
The Ukrainian president welcomed the Western reaction to the Russian referendum.
The Ukrainian presidency also considered that Russia’s threat of referendums reflects its fear of defeat.
The Director of the Ukrainian Presidential Office, Andriy Yermak, confirmed in a comment on Telegram, Tuesday, that his country will deal in an appropriate way with Russia, noting that these referendums are fake.
Russia: setting the target first
This war of referendums comes after the Ukrainian forces made remarkable progress during the past days in the north-east of the country, as part of a counter-attack launched two weeks ago to restore vast towns and cities that had been under Russian control for months.
It also simultaneously launched a massive offensive to regain territory in the south, seeking to besiege thousands of Russian soldiers who were cut off from supplies on the western bank of the Dnipro River, and to restore Kherson, the only large city that Russia has maintained since last February.
It is noteworthy that with the conflict between Moscow and Kiev entering its seventh month, the Kremlin master confirmed a few days ago that his country is not in a hurry to end the military operation it launched on the lands of its western neighbor on February 14, and that it will not stop it before achieving its goals.