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Updated January 21st, 2023 at 14:53 IST

US general says it will be 'very difficult' to eject Russian forces from Ukraine this year

America's Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, along with US Secretary of defence Lloyd Austin, were in Germany yesterday.

Sagar Kar
Ukraine
Image: AP | Image:self
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US' Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, along with US Secretary of defence Lloyd Austin, were in Germany on Friday to take part in Ukraine Defense Contact Group Meeting, which was being held in Ramstein Air Base. Speaking at a press conference, Gen. Milley stated that war in Ukraine has become an "absolute catastrophe" for Russia as it has witnessed over 1,00,000 casualties. He, however, added that it will be very difficult to militarily eject Russian forces from Ukrainian territory in 2023.  

"President Putin could end this war today. It -- it's -- he started it. It's his war of choice, and he could end it today because it's turning into an absolute catastrophe for Russia: massive amounts of casualties, lots of other damage to the Russian military, et cetera. So he should and could end this war right now, right today," Gen Milley said at the press conference

Speaking about the tactical elements of the war, he said that "from a military standpoint, I still maintain that for this year it would be very, very difficult to militarily eject the Russian forces from all -- every inch of Ukraine and occupied -- or Russian-occupied Ukraine. That doesn't mean it can't happen; doesn't mean it won't happen, but it'd be very, very difficult". 

The goal of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group Meeting was to persuade Germany that sending battle tanks to Ukraine is a good idea. The duo addressed a press conference after the meeting.

War in Ukraine will come to an end through negotiations, says Gen. Mark Milley

General Mark Milley added that it is possible for the defense in Ukraine to be stabilized and for the Ukrainians to use the equipment provided to them to launch an offensive operation to regain control of their territory. He also mentioned that the outcome of such an operation will be seen in the future. Speaking about the end of the war, he suggested that the war in Ukraine will come to an end through negotiations, but the timing of such negotiations will be determined by the leaders of Russia and Ukraine. 

Gen. Mark Milley acknowledged that the numbers of casualties in war are often uncertain, but he reported that Russian casualties in the war in Ukraine are significantly over 100,000. He said that the Russians have suffered a tremendous amount of casualties in their military, including regular military and mercenaries such as the Wagner Group. He also mentioned that the Russians have called up a mobilization of 3,00,000, but only managed to get 2,00,000 to 2,50,000, which is being used to replace the losses in manpower, but the Russians have suffered a huge amount. He also accepted that Ukraine too has suffered a huge amount of casualties. 

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Published January 21st, 2023 at 14:53 IST

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