Monday, August 8, 2022

Russian forces movement towards Kyiv ‘stalled’ for now, says US defense official

Russian forces’ movement towards the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv is currently “stalled,” a senior US defense official said on Tuesday morning (local time). Russia’s advance on Kyiv is “where it was yesterday,” the official told reporters, citing a variety of factors, including lack of food for Russian troops. Russians are not only facing “fuel and sustainment” problems but are showing signs that they are running out of food, the official claimed, adding that the Ukrainian “resistance” also could be a possible reason for the stall.

The official also stated that Russia’s current lack of progress may not be only due to problems arising from resistance or their own logistics and they are “possibly regrouping, rethinking, reevaluating” before carrying on again. “They (Russia) will regroup, they will adjust, they will change their tactics,” the official said, adding that the Russian defence ministry openly admitted it would target civilian areas in Kyiv. Earlier this week, a satellite image released by US satellite imaging company Maxar revealed the presence of a huge Russian convoy stretching 64km(40 miles) from Antonov airport in the northern outskirts of Kyiv to the Ukrainian town of Pyrsbirk. Observers believe that it might be part of the Russian strategy to surround the Ukrainian capital, with another military column, before advancing on the city.

According to the official, Russia has committed more than 80 per cent of its pre-staged combat power in Ukraine. The official also informed that more than 400 missiles have been launched by Russia towards Ukrainian targets. The official also noted that the Russian military appears to be “risk-averse” when it comes to its own troops.

On Tuesday (IST), Russia bombed the main TV tower of Kyiv, according to Ukrainian interior minister officials. Five people were reported dead in the bombardment. Earlier in the day, Russia had declared its intention of bombing buildings housing offices of Ukranian intelligence services and warned residents living near them to evacuate their homes.

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