Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky held a meeting with senior commanders Thursday, hinting afterward that his military's offensive brigades are gearing up for a fight but offering no concrete information.
“The offensive brigades are doing well, we are preparing, but no details," Zelensky said.
Ukraine has made significant gains along the conflict's front lines in recent days, raising speculation that its highly anticipated counteroffensive may already be underway.
A senior US official told CNN “shaping operations” began last week, but Ukraine has yet to state outright that its counterattack has formally begun.
After several days of heavy Russian missile attacks on Kyiv and other parts of Ukraine, Zelensky said his military will prioritize bolstering its air defense systems and missile stocks, training troops and acquiring more long-range weapons.
Solemn anniversary: Zelensky also marked the anniversary of Stalin’s deportation of the Tatar people from Crimea in 1944.
“We honor the memory of all the victims of the deportation of the Crimean Tatar people," the Ukrainian leader said in his nightly address. "It was one of the most serious crimes of the 20th century — the entire nation was forcibly deported from its native land and forced to live in a foreign land for decades. And when people returned home, Russia once again brought its evil to their home.”