11:09 04 Apr 2023

NATO chief on Bakhmut: What russian troops lack in quality, they make up for in quantity

In the battles for the fortress city of Bakhmut in the eastern Donetsk region, the russian army is trying to compensate for the low quality of its military equipment and command with quantity.

In an interview with Radio Liberty, NATO Secretary Jens Stoltenberg shared this opinion.

The alliance chief stressed that the russians were losing many more soldiers than the Ukrainian forces because they lacked quality command and equipment. However, russia should not be underestimated "because it has demonstrated readiness to introduce tens of thousands of new troops."

"For me, this is just one more argument in favor of us supporting Ukraine, helping Ukraine liberate the land and fight back against the russian invaders," Stoltenberg said.

NATO secretary general was asked how the battles for Bakhmut affected the Ukrainian forces and the russian army. The eastern city of Bakhmut has been the center of the most intense hostilities and the stronghold of Ukraine since the summer of 2022. 

"In the ranks of the russian army, we see low morale, the equipment is often bad, and the training is not very impressive. The command does not really work in many operations. But at the same time, we see: what the russian troops lack in quality, they try to make up for in quantity," Stoltenberg emphasized, adding that the russian command is throwing thousands of troops into battle. They are poorly equipped and trained.

"But, of course, it causes damage, and they can cause losses to the Ukrainian side as well," he said.

Earlier, American analysts at the think tank Institute of Study of War assumed in their report that the mercenaries of the Wagner mercenary group seized the building of the Bakhmut city administration, and russian forces were advancing into the city center.

On April 3, the founder of the Wagner PMC, yevgeny prigozhin, said that russian forces "legally captured" Bakhmut. At the same time, he admitted that Ukrainian troops remained in the western part of the city.

Serhii Cherevaty, the spokesman of the Eastern Group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, said that the russians are far from capturing the city of Bakhmut, and fighting is going on around the administrative building of the city council.


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