Dmytro Kuleba: those who criticize the counter-offensive must “shut up”

2023-08-31 17:47:57

The Ukrainian Foreign Minister, present at an EU meeting in Toledo, attacked Western critics who consider the counter-offensive too slow.

For the second consecutive day, Toledo was at the center of geopolitical Europe. The historic city hosted an informal meeting of 27 European foreign ministers on Thursday, convened by the Spanish presidency of the European Union (EU). The war in Ukraine was one of the main topics on the agenda. The discussions went beyond military contingencies, discussed the day before by their Defense counterparts, to enter in the politico-diplomatic sphere.


“To criticize the slow pace of the counter-offensive is tantamount to spitting in the face of the Ukrainian soldier.”

Dmytro Kuleba

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine

The Ukrainian counter-offensive, President Volodymyr Zelensky’s peace plan, the grain blockade imposed by Moscow and Ukraine’s accession to the EU were at the heart of the debates. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, present in the room, forcefully attacked the critics who, in the Western camp, consider that the counter-offensive is advancing too slowly.

“To criticize the slow pace of the counter-offensive is tantamount to spit in the face of the Ukrainian soldier who every day sacrifices his life advancing and liberating Ukrainian soil one kilometer after another,” said Dmytro Kuleba, visibly annoyed. “I will advise anyone who criticizes the counter-offensive to shut up and come to Ukraine to liberate one square centimeter from the ground itself,” he added.

Minister Kuleba called for new heavy weapons are delivered to Ukraine as well as F-16 fighter jets.

Significant breakthrough to the south

For three months, the Ukrainian army has been leading a counter-offensive in the east of the country with a view to recovering the territories invaded by Russia. The task is complex. In a year, Russian soldiers had time to build lines of defenses consisting of multiple layers of minefields, dragon’s teeth, trenches and artillery.

Ukrainian forces are busy with dismantle these defenses step by step, suffering heavy casualtieswhile Russian propaganda claims that “kyiv has already lost the war” and some voices in the West blame the slowness of operations.


“We need to stop complaining about battlefield operations and deliver what Ukraine needs.”

Gabrielius Landsbergis

Lithuanian Foreign Minister

In recent days, however, Ukrainian soldiers made a significant breakthrough to the south, recapturing Robotyne, a strategic village as the road to the Crimea. They are now moving towards the deeper Russian lines which they hope are less well defended than the first.

Financial support

In Toledo, Dmytro Kuleba received the support of its European counterparts. “We must stop complaining about operations on the battlefield and deliver to Ukraine what it needs,” insisted Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis. “If the war ends today, Putin can claim victory. Who wants to see that?”

The discussions focused on financial support in Kyiv. The High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, defended his proposal to create a fund of 20 billion euros for the next four years to buy military equipment from Ukraine. “The feedback I’ve had has been positive,” said Josep Borrell after the game.

20

Billions of Euro’s

The head of diplomacy Josep Borrell proposed to the Twenty-Seven to create a fund of 20 billion euros released in four years (2023 to 2027) to help Ukraine acquire military equipment.

The decision should be taken at a European summit before the end of the year. But there are still several modalities to be defined, such as determine if 20 billion is a goal to reach or just “a ceilingas Josep Borrell proposed. This question is not yet settled. The Netherlands, reluctant to spend, argues for it to be a ceiling. Ukraine’s hottest supporters , Baltic countries in mind, want to make it an objective.

The summary

  • Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba attacked those who criticize the slowness of the Ukrainian counter-offensiveduring an EU meeting in Toledo.
  • The Ukrainian army has been busy for three months in dismantle Russian defenses in preparation for a breakthrough towards Crimea. A slow and perilous operation, which arouses certain criticisms.
  • European ministers reiterated their support for Kyiv. They plan to create a fund of 20 billion euros over four years.

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