Ukraine lacks weapons to protect its cities as vital EU and US assistance is being held by political disputes, and while President Volodymyr Zelenskyy fights with his commander-in-chief over military strategy, as per Bloomberg.
According to Western officials familiar with the conditions on the frontlines, the situation on the battlefield is increasingly dire, with Kyiv’s forces struggling at times to hold back Russian troops.
In addition, a European diplomat says that Ukraine’s air defenses, which rely heavily on expensive interceptors provided by the allies, weren’t able to destroy as many targets as in the past in the recent Russian missile attacks.
While Ukrainian officials say that they will keep up the fight against Russia’s invasion forces even if allied support doesn’t come through, in reality, the country doesn’t have enough artillery and air-defense munitions to supply all of its military units.
This week, European defense ministers will meet in Brussels to discuss the need to boost the bloc’s defense industry and its military aid to Ukraine.
In 2023, the EU pledged to supply Ukrainian armed forces with 1 million rounds of ammunition.
European allies are expected to miss their promise of providing the ammunition, delivering only about 600,000 by 1 March. The ministers may seek to count other supplies to boost the total, but still won’t reach the 1 million goal, according to the diplomats.
The sources said that even if EU aid does come through, the lack of US support would be felt by Ukrainian forces on the battlefield by late spring 2024.
The challenges have also grown due to the tensions between Zelenskyy and his military chief, Valery Zaluzhnyi, as the front lines have stagnated, according to Western diplomats.
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