Russia Ukraine news latest: Wagner chief ‘knocking on all doors’ for war weapons from Putin


Ukrainian forces demobilise Russian tanks near Donetsk frontline

Russian mercenary group Wagner’s chief Yevgeny Prigozhin has said he is “knocking on all doors” for replenishing arms and ammunition for his forces leading the battle in the besieged country amid signs of deepening feud with Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

“I’m knocking on all doors and sounding the alarm about ammunition and reinforcements, as well as the need to cover our flanks,” he said in a statement yesterday released by his press service.

“If everyone is coordinated, without ambition, screw-ups and tantrums, and carries out this work, then we will block the armed forces of Ukraine. If not, then everyone will be s*****d,” the Wagner chief warned.

Ukraine’s defence in battered Bakhmut has continued to hold out against Vladimir Putin’s forces, one of Kyiv’s commanders in the frontline city has said, albeit in conditions of “utter hell”.

Volodymyr Zelensky’s office said his chief of the general staff and commander of ground forces had both spoken to him “in favour of continuing the defensive operation” in the frontline city.


Wagner chief says knocking on all doors for ammunition

Russia’s Wagner mercenary force chief Yevgeny Prigozhin reiterated his desperate plea to regular army, seeking to supply his forces with more ammunition and reinforcements along with covering support if his private army has to win the war against Ukraine.

“I’m knocking on all doors and sounding the alarm about ammunition and reinforcements, as well as the need to cover our flanks,” he said in a statement yesterday released by his press service.

“If everyone is coordinated, without ambition, screw-ups and tantrums, and carries out this work, then we will block the armed forces of Ukraine. If not, then everyone will be s*****d,” the Wagner chief warned.

Wagner group, comprising strongly of prison convicts released from Russia’s prisons to fight the grinding war in Ukraine, is leading the Bakhmut assault but has faced hiccups this week.

The appeal from him comes amid signs of a deepening rift between him and the Russian defence ministry whom he has bitterly criticised for months and accused of deliberately starving his men of ammunition, an allegation it has rejected.

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 03:28


Muddy conditions likely hampering Ukraine’s resupply in Bakhmut – MoD

British intelligence has said that the Ukrainian defence of Bakhmut continues to degrade forces on both sides with the conditions of spring hampering the battle for mining city in eastern sector.

“Over the weekend, Ukrainian forces likely stabilised their defensive perimeter following previous Russian advances into the north of the town,” the British defence ministry said.

It added: “A Russian strike destroyed a bridge over the only paved supply road into Bakhmut still under Ukrainian control around 2 March. Muddy conditions are likely hampering Ukrainian resupply efforts as they increasingly resort to using unpaved tracks.”

Additionally, the ministry said that the public disagreements between the Wagner group and Russian ministry of defence over the allocation of munitions spilling out in open “highlight the difficulty in sustaining the high levels of personnel and ammunition required to advance with their current tactics”.

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 06:32


China accuses ‘invisible hand’ of stoking Ukraine war

Chinese foreign minister Qin Gang has said an “invisible hand” is pushing for the escalation of war in Ukraine after Russia invaded the country last year, but the official did not take names.

The “invisible hand” is “using the Ukraine crisis to serve certain geopolitical agendas”, Mr Qin said, as he reiterated China’s call for dialogue.

China has fiercely defended its stance on Ukraine, even as west has criticised Beijing’s decision to not call Russia the aggressor after the Soviet nation invaded Kyiv last year.

Beijing has also vehemently denied accusations from Washington that it has been considering providing lethal weapons to Russia.

But China must advance its relations with Russia as the world becomes more turbulent, Mr Qin said.

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 06:14


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Andy Gregory7 March 2023 06:01


Ukrainian generals tell Zelensky not to withdraw from Bakhmut

Volodymyr Zelensky has said that he has been told by his commanders to not withdraw from Bakhmut and that no part of Ukraine can be abandoned.

“Today at the staff meeting, I directly asked both Khortytsia commander, general Syrskyi, and commander-in-chief Zaluzhny about their view of the further defense operation in the Bakhmut sector,” he said in his nightly address, with options of “either withdrawal or continuation of defence and reinforcement of the city.”

“Both generals replied: do not withdraw and reinforce. And this opinion was unanimously backed by the staff,” he said, adding that there were “no other opinions”.

“I told the commander-in-chief to find the appropriate forces to help the guys in Bakhmut,” he said.

“There is no part of Ukraine about which one can say that it can be abandoned. There is no Ukrainian trench in which the resilience and heroism of our warriors would be disregarded,” Mr Zelensky said.

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 05:45


UK ammunition reserves fall to ‘dangerously low’ levels due to supply to Ukraine, say MPs

Rebuilding Britain’s dwindling stockpile of munitions after the war in Ukraine could take at least a decade putting UK national security at risk, MPs have warned.

The Commons Defence Committee said the UK and other Nato allies have allowed their reserves of ammunition to fall to “dangerously low levels” as they seek to keep Kyiv supplied in its struggle against the Russian invader.

It said the way in which Western governments procure armaments is “not fit for purpose” and it urged the Ministry of Defence to draw up an action plan to cut the time needed to restore its stockpiles.

Read the full story here:

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 05:18


How shadowy Wagner Group mercenaries support Russian soldiers in Ukraine conflict

Our international correspondent Borzou Daragahi reports:

The planes started moving in late December 2021 and early January 2022. Onboard the secretive military aircraft from Libya were hundreds of hardened mercenaries of the Wagner Group, the shadowy umbrella of private military contractor firms linked to Vladimir Putin’s ally Yevgeny Prigozhin.

Their destination was the same place where the so-called “little green men” first came to international prominence in 2014: Ukraine.

Experts closely following the movements and actions of the Wagner complex for years say the military contractors – who include former and active-duty Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian and Serbian soldiers – have been on the ground in Ukraine for months, their presence confirmed in news reports and hinted at in cryptic social media posts by accounts associated with the mercenary group.

But many questions remain about their role in the Ukraine conflict.

“They are skilled at counterinsurgency, and Ukraine is the birthplace of the group,” said Ruslan Trad, a specialist on the Wagner Group who has traced its movements in the Middle East and Africa. “They are very good at tracking resistance. But I doubt they will participate in direct fighting,” he told The Independent.

That has not been borne out by subsequent events, with Wagner fighters frequently in the thick of it all along the frontline, most recently in the entrenched, months-long warfare around the old Donbas mining town of Bakhmut, seen as a crucial strategic target by Moscow.

Andy Gregory7 March 2023 04:59


Wagner chief says denied access to Russian military command

Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin has accused the Kremlin of denying his representative access to the headquarters of Russia’s military command for Ukraine and said that he was still not getting enough munitions despite repeated public complaints.

“On 5 March, I wrote a letter to the commander of the SMO (special military operation) grouping about the urgent need to allocate ammunition. On 6 March, at 8 am my representative at the headquarters had his pass cancelled and was denied access,” he said via his press service on Telegram.

He added that his representative had been spurned by the army’s top brass a day after he urgently requested ammunition supplies.

The Russian defence ministry has not responded to the private militia leader.

Moscow’s warfare on Ukraine has been commanded personally by Russia’s top general, chief of the general staff Valery Gerasimov.

Arpan Rai7 March 2023 04:49


Control of Bakhmut is of ‘symbolic’ rather than ‘strategic’ value, says US defence chief

Control of Bakhmut is more of “symbolic” than “strategic” value, the US defence secretary has said.

Speaking to reporters in the Middle East on Monday, Lloyd Austin said he would not predict when or if Ukrainian troops might leave Bakhmut, but that should it fall that “won’t necessarily mean that the Russians have changed the tide of this fight”.

“I think it is more of a symbolic value than it is strategic and operational value,” Mr Austin said.

Andy Gregory7 March 2023 03:52


Bakhmut defence ‘yielding great results’, says Zelensky

Volodymyr Zelensky has said that Bakhmut is “yielding one of the greatest results” of Russia’s war.

Speaking in his nightly address, the president said: “Bakhmut has yielded and is yielding one of the greatest results during this war, during the entire battle for Donbas And I thank every soldier who is fighting in this most difficult area. Who is fighting for all parts of our country, in all directions.

“We are defending and will continue to defend every part of Ukraine. When the time comes, we will liberate every city and village of our country. And we will hold the occupier accountable for every shot against Ukraine, for every meanness against Ukrainians.

“If we can do it legally, then we will do it legally. If we can do it with weapons, then we will do it with weapons.

“Due to our unity, due to our determination, due to the fact that we value the whole of Ukraine and every Ukrainian, we know exactly the outcome of this war. We have known it since the first days of the war.”

Andy Gregory7 March 2023 02:41

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