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Vladimir Putin's cunning move laid bare as expert predicts vital struggle with Ukraine


Vladimir Putin’s recent military attacks on the Kharkiv region reveal a multifaceted method aimed at strategic gains, experts have claimed. Professor David Lewis, from the University of Exeter, believed the move was aimed at “several combined goals” against Ukraine.

He told Express.co.uk: “Russia seems to have several combined goals in its Kharkiv offensive. First, to open up a new front that spreads Ukraine’s defences along the front more thinly.

“Second, to create a buffer zone to limit Ukrainian cross-border attacks and to allow the Russians to threaten Kharkiv city with artillery. And third, to put more pressure on Ukrainian positions around the strategically important town of Kupiansk.”

While acknowledging Russia’s aspirations, Professor Lewis emphasised the challenges posed by the Ukrainian forces.

He added: “Russia does not have the forces in place to take control of the city of Kharkiv, but will try to make life there very difficult through constant attacks, forcing more people to evacuate.

“Ukraine will probably be able to prevent a major breakthrough around Kharkiv but it faces a serious challenge along many parts of the front. It needs to balance the defence of territory around Kharkiv with the need to contain Russian advances further south in the Donbas.”

It comes as clashes intensified in northeastern Ukraine over the weekend.

Vovchansk, a once-thriving town, now stands as a battleground where Ukrainian troops confront advancing Russian forces. With the town’s population dwindling amid relentless fighting, concerns mount regarding its fate, echoing the plight of other Ukrainian cities subjected to similar assaults.

Recent developments underscore Russia’s concerted efforts to exploit vulnerabilities in Ukraine’s defences, particularly before anticipated military aid arrives from the United States and European allies.

This strategic window presents Moscow with an opportunity to advance its objectives, exacerbating the peril for Kyiv in what analysts describe as one of the most precarious phases of the conflict.

As the conflict unfolds, the Kremlin’s tactics in the Kharkiv region reveal a calculated approach aimed at reshaping the dynamics of the battlefield.

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