Russia Claims More Ukraine Territory and Threatens Expanded War Objectives

Dr. E.C. Beuck
Vladimir Putin meeting with Sergei Lavrov and Sergei ShoiguRussia Presidential Press and Information Office
Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, has announced that his country’s military goals in Ukraine have expanded beyond the original aim of the eastern Donbas region to include other territories that Russian forces have been contesting in the eastern and southern parts of the country.

In the interview, Foreign Minister Lavrov stated that previous discussions of a possible deal to end the hostilities between Russia and Ukraine were premised on the situation on the ground in March. He goes on to state that, given that the situation since then has changed, Russian focus on the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics has expanded to include the Kherson region, the Zaporizhia region, and a number of other territories under contention with Ukrainian forces.

The announcement by Foreign Minister Lavrov comes as the United States has mentioned detecting signs that Russia is in the process of preparing to annex territory it has seized from Ukraine, much as it previously did in the case of Crimea. Foreign Minister Lavrov even went so far as to repeat rhetoric that it was the US and the United Kingdom that wanted the hostilities to expand into a ‘real war and provoke a clash between Russia and European countries.’

The moves towards annexing additional territory comes close on the heels of threats levied by Putin against the European Union that gas supplies might dwindle as we get closer to winter months. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has accused Russia of essentially blackmailing the European Union, and has pointed to a plan being formed to cut energy demands ahead of Russia’s threatened cut off of the gas supply.

By this point in time Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has killed thousands, displaced millions, and destroyed a wide-swath of east and southeast Ukraine. Its actions have further exacerbated food and global energy prices and will likely contribute to greater food insecurity, perhaps even famine, in poorer countries around the world who had previously relied on Ukraine and Russia for grain supplies. Given Foreign Minister Lavrov’s comments, and his warning that Russia’s objectives will expand further if NATO states continue to provide military support to Ukraine, the death and destruction will continue to get worse.

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Holding a PhD in Political Science, I write about current events and on political topics related to international relations, international law, conflict both between and within states, and the interactions between technology and politics.

Washington, DC

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