Russia Launches Fresh Wave Of Missile Attacks On Ukraine

Washington sees no signs that Moscow is interested in negotiating an end to the war in Ukraine, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said.

“There is always value in diplomacy if the countries in question, and in this case Russia, are genuinely interested in meaningful diplomacy. And what we’ve seen, at least recently, is the exact opposite,” Blinken told CBS News on Dec. 4, adding that Putin has changed tactics after suffering setbacks on the battlefield.

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“He couldn’t win on the battlefield, so he’s taking, he’s directing his anger and his fire at Ukrainian civilians, going after the energy infrastructure, trying to turn off the lights, turn off the heat, turn off the electricity.” That’s what’s going on.

“So unless and until Putin demonstrates that he’s actually interested in meaningful diplomacy, it’s unlikely to get anywhere,” Blinken told Face the nation.

In recent weeks, Russian military focus has been on striking Ukrainian infrastructure across the country, pressing an offensive in the city of Bakhmut in the Donetsk region and shelling targets in the city of Kherson, which Ukrainian forces liberated last month after eight months of Russian occupation.

On December 1, President Joe Biden indicated that he would be willing to talk to Putin if the Russian leader demonstrated that he was serious about ending the invasion.

“I’m willing to talk to Mr. Putin if he really has an interest in him deciding that he’s looking for a way to end the war,” Biden said. “He hasn’t done that yet.”

The head of US intelligence said fighting in Russia’s war in Ukraine was proceeding at a “reduced pace” and suggested that Ukrainian forces may have better prospects in the coming months.

Avril Haynes referred to past claims by some that Putin’s advisers may be shielding him from bad news — about Russia — about the progress of the war, and said he was “increasingly aware of the challenges facing the military in Russia “.

“But it’s not clear to us yet that at this stage he has a full picture of how challenging they are,” Haynes, the US director of national intelligence, said on December 3.

The British Ministry of Defence, in its latest intelligence assessment on December 4, pointed to new signs from independent Russian media that public support in Russia for the military campaign is “significantly declining”.

Meduza reported that it received a recent confidential public opinion survey conducted by the Federal Protection Service, which is responsible for guarding the Kremlin and providing security for senior government officials.

The poll, commissioned by the Kremlin, found that 55 percent of those polled supported peace talks with Ukraine, while 25 percent wanted the war to continue. The report does not mention the margin of error.

With reports by AP and Reuters


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