Russia does not yet fully control Ukrainian airspace, the senior US official told reporters on condition of anonymity.
“Ukraine’s air defense is still operating, although it has been damaged by Russian air strikes,” he said. “They still have anti-missile defense and (…) they still have aircraft that deny Russian aircraft access to (Ukrainian airspace).”
In addition, the Ukrainian military’s “command and control” capabilities, which allow coordination of military operations at the highest level, “remain intact”, he said.
“We believe that Russia has lost some of its momentum in the last 24 hours,” a senior official said. “They are facing more resistance than expected.”
“They are not moving as far or as fast as we think they expected,” he said, noting that Russian forces have not yet controlled any Ukrainian urban centers.
“We have information about what they thought they could do,” he said. “And we continue to have information that it’s not going the way they had planned.”
However, a Pentagon official pointed out that Russia has deployed only a third of forces in Ukraine to the country’s borders in recent weeks, and that Moscow aims to seize Kiev to establish a pro-regime there – not Russian It was revenge.
“The situation can change. It can change very quickly,” he said. “They have a lot of firepower at their disposal.”
Russia has so far advanced into Ukrainian territory along three axes: from Crimea in the south to the city of Kherson, across the Dnieper, from Belarus to Kiev in the north, along two routes to the northeast and northwest of the Ukrainian capital, and From the Russian city to the major industrial city of Kharkiv from Belgorod, according to former Pentagon estimates.
Although Russian forces have reached the outskirts of Kiev, they have yet to reach the city center. In addition, the city of Kharkiv has not fallen under the Russian army, and intense fighting continues in the region, the official said.
According to the Pentagon, in the south, the offensive against Kherson continues, but with the landing of several thousand Russian troops from the Azov Sea and the Black Sea towards the city of Mariupol, it has expanded to the west.
Russian forces are also trying to take control of the crucial Kakhovka power plant northwest of Kherson, where fighting continues. Moscow also launched a cyberattack in an attempt to take control of the plant.
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