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Putin on brink as Russia will 'pay exorbitant price' for invasion of Ukraine


Russia has launched fresh attacks on Ukraine despite Moscow’s pledge to reduce military action, regional authorities claimed today. Russia said on Tuesday it would cut back operations around Chernihiv and the capital Kyiv in an effort to “boost mutual trust” in peace talks. However, the Chernihiv region’s governor has claimed attacks continued overnight into Wednesday. Russian President Vladimir Putin sent his soldiers into Ukraine over a month ago, and the bombardment of major cities has been relentless.

However, the soldiers on the ground have been unable to make the progress that many feared they would at the start of the invasion.

This week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said issues over Crimea and Donbas, two contested regions in Ukraine in recent years, have been resolved.

Russia will likely need to be seen to have gained some sort of territory to avoid comprehensive defeat in Ukraine.

Earlier this month, CNBC spoke to experts who analysed what could be the consequences of various outcomes of the war.

The analysts at the Scowcroft Centre for Strategy and Security program said that the Kremlin realises that Russia “will pay an exorbitant price” for its invasion of Ukraine

In the expert’s “rosiest” possible scenario for how the conflict could end, Ukraine could see its own defensive capabilities bolstered by NATO, allowing its military and civilian resistance to “overcome the odds and grind Moscow’s advance to a halt.”

In this hypothetical scenario, Putin would be prevented from toppling Kyiv’s government and establishing a puppet regime.

The experts added: “The short war has claimed thousands of lives on both sides, leaving widespread bitterness in its wake.

“And although a democratic Ukraine emerges intact, if not unscathed, its still-dangerous neighbour faces an uncertain future with the Russian political landscape at a tipping point.

“Whether the country leans toward greater authoritarianism under Putin, or away from him altogether, will largely determine how Russia behaves with the rest of the world.”

Reports today suggest that Russia’s situation on the ground in Ukraine is not improving

READ MORE: Putin turns on ‘misleading’ military leaders

Some Russian soldiers in Ukraine have refused to carry out orders, sabotaged their equipment and accidentally shot down one of their own aircraft, new intelligence has shown.

Russian President Vladimir Putin “massively misjudged” the capabilities of his armed forces while underestimating Ukraine’s resistance and the West’s resolve, the head of Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) spy service said.

GCHQ chief Sir Jeremy Fleming added: “We believe Putin’s advisers are afraid to tell him the truth.”

He said there was evidence of low morale among Russian soldiers, who were poorly equipped.

Sir Jeremy added: “Even though we believe Putin’s advisers are afraid to tell him the truth, what’s going on and the extent of these misjudgements must be crystal clear to the regime.”

Revealing details about the state of the Russian military operation, Sir Jeremy continued: “We’ve seen Russian soldiers ‒ short of weapons and morale ‒ refusing to carry out orders, sabotaging their own equipment, and even accidentally shooting down their own aircraft.”

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Earlier this month, Ukrainian MP Inna Sovsun told Express.co.uk that Russian forces were struggling to make progress near Kyiv, where she remained.

Urging the West to step in and provide more military support, she said: “Ukraine’s army has been kicking their a***, the Russian army is not as strong as it is meant to be, they are badly equipped, their morale is bad.

“It is not actually that strong an army – and compared to NATO’s armies, I don’t think Russia can stand in that fight.

“I know there is this nuclear threat everyone is mentioning, but I think it is overstated.

“After all, there are some less crazy people in Putin’s surroundings who won’t let that happen. Some people in Russian intelligence are providing information to the West and to Ukraine.”



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