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Intelligence says Russia is deploying aircraft to Ukraine's borders

Feb 15, 2023

Russia is relocating military aircraft and helicopters closer to Ukraine's borders, which may indicate that the war is entering a new phase.


This was reported by the Financial Times, citing two Western officials with access to NATO intelligence.

According to one of the interlocutors of the publication, the ground forces of the Russian Federation are exhausted, so the Kremlin may rely on the remaining air force as part of a new offensive. NATO believes that Russia is preparing to launch an air campaign, involving about 80% of its military aircraft, and will try to disable Ukraine's air defense.

Financial Times sources say that in this regard, the issue of strengthening Ukraine's air defense was a priority at the last meeting of Western allies, pushing the issue of supplying fighter jets to Ukraine to the back burner.

After the NATO meeting in Brussels on February 14, Pentagon Secretary Lloyd Austin told reporters that he has not yet seen any signs of a Russian air force buildup near Ukraine's borders. But we know that Russia has a significant number of aircraft in reserve. That's why we emphasize that we need to do everything we can to give Ukraine as much air defense capability as possible," he said, according to the BBC.

The US Secretary of Defense also said that there were no press reports about the delivery of fighter jets to Ukraine.

Ukrainian and Western intelligence agencies have repeatedly warned that Russia is planning a new offensive in Ukraine, which could be timed to coincide with the anniversary of the invasion.

According to an estimate by the intelligence services of Western countries and Ukraine, cited by The Washington Post on February 13, Russia has now concentrated about 300,000 people in Ukraine, twice as many as at the beginning of the invasion. Western countries expect that Russia will involve several hundred thousand more people in the war.

Author - Serhii Kolomiets, 15/02/2023

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