Russia: Donbas region ‘liberated … very soon’
Russia’s permanent representative to the UN has insisted Moscow is making progress in Ukraine and the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions will be “liberated … very soon”.
Asked if after 100 days of armed conflict the Russian invasion of Ukraine is going according to plan, Vasily Nebenzya said “it seems to me that there is progress. No one promised a result in three days or a week.”
He continued: “Now some experts assure that the Russian military operation has stalled and is going much slower than planned. But there is progress, it continues, and it’s clear as day.”
Vasily Nebenzya was interviewed on the BBC’s HardTalk by presenter Steven Sackur.
In the interview Sackur pressed Nebenzya: “Do you admit that the original plan to take over Kyiv and install a pro-Russian regime there has completely failed?”
“I don’t know anything about such plans,” he replied, noting that no one from the Russian command had ever publically said Moscow intended to capture Kyiv.
“The scale of your losses over the past 100 days is amazing,” Sackur continued. “People living in Russia would be absolutely shocked by these figures if they knew about them.”
Nebenzya did not confirm these losses.
“As I said, they are not officially disclosed, and in the course of any conflict, the parties tend to greatly inflate each other’s losses,” he said. “I cannot tell you the numbers and I cannot comment that Ukraine or the US are talking about it there.”
When asked if the conflict had reached a stalemate, the Russian UN representative said the main goal now is the liberation of Donbas.
“Just give it time … and you will see the Donetsk and Luhansk regions liberated. And, I hope, this will happen very soon.”