Ukrainian soldiers have encountered more challenging resistance from Russian forces than anticipated during their counteroffensive, slowing progress towards reclaiming enemy-held territory. A 29-year-old soldier shared that the mission, initially planned for two days, faced delays, and the Russian forces were prepared and launched attacks with anti-tank weapons and grenade launchers.
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The conflict has entered a slower phase after nearly 18 months of intense fighting, with Ukraine focusing on its counteroffensive and Russia consolidating its gains. The Ukrainian troops advanced towards Melitopol in Zaporizhzhia region, but official progress updates have been limited.
A recent Russian ballistic missile attack on Ukrainian President Zelenskyy’s hometown resulted in casualties, highlighting the intensity of the conflict. Zelenskyy emphasized that the war is returning to Russia’s territory.
Ukrainian soldiers described the difficult conditions they encountered during the push towards Staromaiorske, emphasizing the slow but steady advancement amid adversities.
Russia has criticized Ukraine’s counteroffensive, alleging inefficiency in resource utilization. However, U.S. officials have refuted this assessment and expressed confidence in Ukraine’s long-term strategy.