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HomeNationalPutin faces 'defection problems' as Russian officials squabble among themselves over Ukraine...

Putin faces ‘defection problems’ as Russian officials squabble among themselves over Ukraine strategyTAZAA News

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Russian President Vladimir Putin is facing desertion problems in the country’s military, and many commanding officers have complained about Moscow’s lack of strategy amid Ukraine’s fierce resistance operations, a US official said.

During an appearance on CNN on Wednesday, John Kirby, the coordinator for strategic communications at the National Security Council at the White House, said the problem of defection was caused by low morale and problems within the Russian command.

“[Putin is] Struggling [The Russian military has] Poor unit cohesion, defection in the ranks, soldiers unwilling to fight,” Kirby said in the interview. “He had terrible morale, unit cohesion, command and control on the battlefield was still unresolved. He has issues with letting go and he’s forcing the wounded back into the fight. So clearly, he has a manpower problem.”

In addition to mobilization issues, Russian soldiers are arguing among themselves over a lack of decisions from Moscow on where to increase their defense lines in Ukraine’s counterinsurgency operation, CNN reported, citing sources familiar with US intelligence.

Since launching its counteroffensive earlier this month, the Ukrainian army is said to have recaptured 6,000 square kilometers of territory from the Russians. Ukrainian forces forced the Russians to withdraw from several towns and settlements in the Kharkiv region, including Izium and Kupiansk.

On Monday, the Russian army lost full control over the eastern Luhansk region after Ukraine seized the village of Bilohorivka near the city of Lysichansk, the Kyiv Post reported, citing the Ukrainian governor of the Luhansk region, Sergey Haidai.

It is reported that the Ukrainian army is now trying to liberate the city of Lyman, which fell to the Russian army in May. The New York Times reports that several villages in the city have now been retaken by Kyiv forces.

Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, Moscow’s forces have lost 55,510 soldiers, according to estimates by Ukraine’s Defense Ministry. But the Kremlin said only 5,937 soldiers died in the war.

Representation. A Russian soldier in the port of Berdyansk in southeastern Ukraine.AFP / Yuri Kadobnov

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