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There are indicators that Russia is getting ready an escalation of the struggle in Ukraine in February, the secretary of Ukraine’s Safety Council, Oleksiy Danilov, mentioned on January 4, a day after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy mentioned that Russia was planning to name up extra troops for a serious new offensive.

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“There are lots of indicators that give us purpose to say that they could have one other try in February,” Danilov mentioned on Ukrainian nationwide tv.

Danilov mentioned one of many indicators is the elevated exercise of Dmitry Kozak, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s deputy chief of employees, who has been holding conferences in Europe to be able to pressure Ukraine to signal peace agreements.

Danilov mentioned Ukraine “is not going to go for it.”

Kyiv has been saying for weeks that Putin plans to order one other mass mobilization and shut his borders to forestall males from escaping the draft.

“We’ve got little question that the present masters of Russia will throw the whole lot they’ve left and everybody they’ll spherical as much as attempt to flip the tide of the struggle and not less than delay their defeat,” Zelenskiy mentioned in his nightly video handle on January 3.

“We’ve got to disrupt this Russian state of affairs…. Any try at their new offensive should fail,” he mentioned.

The feedback got here whilst Moscow confronted harsh inside criticism over a strike that killed scores of recent conscripts.

Moscow has acknowledged that 89 troopers had been killed within the strike within the Donetsk area on December 31. Ukraine’s navy and pro-Kremlin navy bloggers have mentioned that round 400 troopers died or had been wounded within the artillery assault within the city of Makiyivka.

Hanna Malyar, deputy minister of protection of Ukraine, mentioned important Russian losses meant Moscow would possible should announce a second partial mobilization within the first quarter of the 12 months.

Russia’s present efforts are centered on capturing Lyman, Soledar, Bakhmut, Avdiyivka, and Maryinka, Malyar mentioned.

To extend the effectiveness of using troops, Russia “will proceed to type further assault models within the close to future” and focus the primary efforts on the seize of the communities, she wrote on Telegram.

In keeping with the Protection Ministry’s Principal Directorate of Intelligence, the Kremlin’s plans “stay unchanged — forcing the management of our nation to barter by pressure,” Malyar mentioned.

Ukraine acquired a pledge for navy gear on January 4 from French President Emmanuel Macron, who mentioned France would ship mild AMX-10 RC armored fight automobiles to assist Kyiv in its struggle in opposition to Russia.

Describing the automobiles as “mild tanks,” an aide to Macron mentioned the French president, who spoke by cellphone with Zelenskiy, needs to extend support to Ukraine, but it surely was not instantly clear how lots of the automobiles could be dispatched or after they could be delivered.

Earlier on January 4, explosions had been reported within the neighborhood of Russia’s Belbek navy airfield on Ukraine’s occupied Crimean Peninsula, whereas Moscow renewed its air assaults on Ukrainian civilian infrastructure regardless of Kyiv’s successes downing Russian drones.

The Russia-installed head of the port metropolis of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev, claimed on Telegram that two drones had been shot down by Russian forces. RFE/RL can not affirm that report.

Belbek is house to the thirty eighth fighter regiment of the Russian Air Pressure. It was focused by a drone assault in August 2022. Since then, air defenses in Crimea have been activated usually. The occupation head of the peninsula, Sergei Aksyonov, has mentioned drone assaults are the “major menace” within the space.

The Ukrainian Normal Workers reported on January 4 that Russia has launched dozens of air and missile strikes, a lot of which focused civilian infrastructure in Kramatorsk, Zaporizhzhya, and Kherson.

The Ukrainian navy reported on January 3 that it had shot down 84 Russian drones on December 31-January 1.

“We’ve got by no means achieved such outcomes,” Air Pressure spokesman Yuriy Ihnat mentioned throughout a phone briefing. “We’ve got shot down practically 500 drones since September.”

Russia has carried out intense air strikes in opposition to Ukraine’s vitality system since October, inflicting widespread blackouts and shortages of heating and water.

With reporting by Reuters

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