Ukraine’s Zelenskiy: We must speed up deliveries of weaponry for frontline soldiers

By Thomson Reuters Apr 30, 2024 | 2:04 PM

(Reuters) – President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Tuesday that Ukraine needed “a significant acceleration” in deliveries of weaponry from its partners to enable its troops to face advancing Russian troops in several sectors of the front line.

Zelenskiy, looking stern, made his comments in his nightly video address amid an acknowledgment from his top commander that Ukraine’s forces have pulled back from villages in some of the most hotly contested sectors in the two-year-old war.

“We need a significant acceleration of supplies to enhance tangibly the capabilities of our soldiers,” Zelenskiy said.

He pointed specifically to deliveries of U.S. weapons, after a six-month slowdown in supplies, as critical in righting the situation at key points in the 1,000-km (600-mile) front line.

“We are very much counting on prompt deliveries from the United States,” he said.

“These supplies must make themselves felt in disrupting the logistics of the occupiers, in making them afraid to base themselves anywhere on occupied territory and in our strength.”

As he listed areas in the east and northeast where fighting remains intense, Zelenskiy said: “That is, anywhere where Russia is pressing and where we must push them out. And where new assault threats may arise.”

The United States says supplies are beginning to reach Ukraine after sharp reductions owing to months of congressional wrangling.

Russia has said its forces have captured several villages in the east after its capture in February of the town of Avdiivka.

Top Ukrainian commander Oleksander Syrskyi has said Russian forces had set a goal of capturing the key town of Chasiv Yar — northeast of Avdiivka — to coincide with Russia’s May 9 commemoration of the Soviet victory in World War Two.

(Reporting by Ron Popeski and Oleksandr Kozhukhar; editing by Jonathan Oatis)