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Russia-Ukraine conflict: NATO warns war could last for years

Freddie Everett (US Department of State) / Wikimedia Commons

The ongoing war in Ukraine is approaching its fourth month, with Russian forces appearing to make progress in their offensive in Eastern Ukraine. NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg warned that the war may go on for years.

Speaking to German news outlet Bild am Sonntag, Stoltenberg stressed the importance of supplying Ukraine with state-of-the-art weaponry and that Kyiv’s supply would increase the chances of Ukrainian forces liberating the Donbas region, which is held by pro-Russian separatists.

“We must prepare for the fact that it could take years. We must not let up in supporting Ukraine,” said Stoltenberg. “Even if the costs are high, not only for military support, also because of rising energy and food prices.”

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson also made the same warning in a piece he wrote for The Sunday Times, where he called for sustained military support for Ukraine. Johnson cited that Ukraine’s foreign backers should maintain the support to make sure it has “the strategic endurance to survive and eventually prevail.”

“Time is now the vital factor,” said Johnson.

“Everything will depend on whether Ukraine can strengthen its ability to defend its soil faster than Russia can renew its capacity to attack. Our task is to enlist time on Ukraine’s side,” wrote Johnson.

Johnson also outlined a four-part plan for “constant funding and technical help,” the levels of aid should be maintained “for years to come” with the potential to increase. Johnson also noted that the ongoing energy and food crises caused by the conflict should not lead to a rushed settlement in Ukraine.

Johnson also said that allowing Russian dictator Vladimir Putin to keep territory in Ukraine would not lead to a peaceful world.

Russian forces are focusing their offensive in the key city of Severodonetsk, where Moscow claimed its offensive was working out as planned.

However, Luhansk governor Serhiy Gaidai pushed back, saying that Russia’s claims of having taken complete control of the city “are a lie.” Gaidai noted that while Russian forces have taken control of only part of the town, they do not control the entire city.

Speaking to Ukraine TV, Gaidai said only Russia was somehow successful in attacking the city of Toshkivka, which is 35 kilometers south of Severodonetsk.

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