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Putin issues warning to the West over supplying Ukraine aid

Putin issues warning to the West over supplying Ukraine aid

Posted June. 07, 2022 07:49,   

Updated June. 07, 2022 07:49


Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Russia will expand the list of targets to attack in Ukraine if Western countries continue to offer weapons aid for Ukraine. As the West vows to send the weapons as planned, concerns are fueling that the battles can be expanded beyond the Donbas region.

According to CNN, President Putin said he will attack new targets if the West sends long-range missiles to Ukraine in an interview with the state-run Russia-1 TV on Sunday (local time). The Russian troops attacked the capital city of Kyiv on the day after a 38-day hiatus.

“As Russia's tactics change, so must our support to Ukraine,” said British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, announcing that Britain will send M270 launchers as planned for the flatland of the Donbas region. Last week, the United States, Germany, and Britain announced their plan to send HIMARS, Mi-17 helicopters, and tactical tanks. “The supply of the advanced Western weapons into the Donbas region will lead to a heavy blow to the Russian troops,” said AFP News, adding that it explains the rationale behind Putin’s latest warning.

As the battles in Donbas intensify, the casualties of the Ukrainian troops are swelling. On Sunday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Ukraine is losing an average 60 to 100 soldiers a day. Even in 1986 when the American troops suffered the worst fatalities from the Vietnam War, the daily death toll was below 50. President Zelensky visited the troops stationed in Zaporizhia, a south-eastern part of the country, to boost the morale of the servicemen.

The tensions between the West and Russia are also escalating over the Ukrainian crops. The New York Times reported that Russia is seeking African buyers for the wheat it plundered from Ukraine. On Friday, the head of the African Union, Senegalese President Macky Sall, met with President Putin in an effort to secure grain supplies from Russia.

The U.S. Department of State said it is working with Pakistan, Bangladesh, and 12 African countries to stop selling of the stolen grain from Ukraine, warning that three Russian cargo vessels were suspected of transporting it. The Ukrainian government claimed that Russia has stolen up to 500,000 tons of wheat from Ukraine since the onset of the invasion on February 24.

Youn-Jong Kim zozo@donga.com