NEW DELHI: Ukraine’s long-awaited counteroffensive against Russian forces appears to be close at hand with the deputy defence minister confirming “offensive action” in some areas. Just how many troops will be involved is not clear, speculation also about the strength of the foreign fighters in Ukrainian ranks. Kyiv estimated “20,000 people from 52 countries” last year, but it seems most of them have gone home leaving about 2000.
According to a study by the New York based, independent non-profit think tank the Soufan Centre, “Ukraine has mostly been left to: Belarussians, Georgians, Chechens, and foreign fighters from the immediate region, particularly those who speak Ukrainian, Russian, or both (although there are small numbers of Westerners in some of these ranks, including former special forces personnel).” It adds that “these regional foreign fighters are the most battle-hardened and have the most relevant combat experience,” something that is crucial in a war that has been unlike most other wars in the recent past....Read More
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