Ukrainian military warns there is ‘high probability of missile strikes’ by Russia soon

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Ukraine’s military has issued a warning that Russian missile strikes are highly likely amid the ongoing conflict. The warning came amid Russia’s Victory Day celebrations in Moscow. Russian troops had begun to seize personal documents from locals in Russian-controlled areas of Zaporizhzhia, according to the Ukrainian army general staff.

According to Ukraine, Russian troops took the documents in order to coerce local residents to participate in Victory Day commemorations. The Ukrainian military also warned that Russia had located 19 battalion tactical groups just across the border in Russia’s Belgorod region. These forces are estimated to number in the thousands, with tanks, missile batteries and other weapons.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on May 9 warned that Russia may have already stepped up its attacks ahead of the annual holiday, with at least 60 people presumed dead after an airstrike on a school in a community from eastern Ukraine where people were seeking refuge on May 8.

The Victory Day Parade is an important event in Russia. It commemorates the defeat and surrender of Nazi Germany on May 8, 1945, which marked the end of World War II in Europe. Some analysts, however, feared that Putin could use his speech at the parade to declare the “special military operation” in Ukraine a full-fledged war.

Putin ends VE Day speech without mentioning escalation

On the contrary, Russian President Vladimir Putin ended his “Victory Day” speech without mentioning any declaration of war or widespread mobilization of the Ukrainian military, ending speculation.

“Side by side, soldiers and officers stand here from many regions of our huge homeland, including those who arrived here directly from Donbass directly from the war zone,” Putin said on May 9.

In recent days, the leaders of the United States and the United Kingdom have quietly expressed concern that Putin may make the announcement during the high-profile holiday commemorating Russia’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War II. Western officials have expressed concern over Russia’s continued failure to acquire and hold territory, particularly in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, which has become the next invasion target. of Putin.

Putin criticized the West for the current situation between Russia and Ukraine in his Victory Day speech, but there were no further escalations.

Additionally, Russian President Vladimir Putin has linked his war in Ukraine to the historic conflict. In a confrontation that lasted more than two months, Putin failed to make progress in Ukraine, with the Russian army devastating but failing to defeat the country. With Putin’s army failing to pull off the gains needed to declare victory, commentators have wondered if the Kremlin might use the occasion to speed up its stuttering campaign.

(With AP inputs)

Image: AP

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