Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov released a video in which he urges Russia’s frontline troops to lay down their arms and promises “life, safety and justice” to those that do.
In the video posted on YouTube on Friday, Reznikov spoke in Russian and warned that “thousands of Russian lads will die” as Moscow’s forces continue to suffer losses.
“Your paratroopers are now dying on the right bank of the Dnipro,” he said. “You pay in blood for someone’s fantasies and false goals.”
As Ukrainian fighters advance in the southern region of Kherson, Kyiv has claimed that Russian units have suffered losses and are trying to evacuate their wounded across the Dnipro River.
What Moscow is saying: Russian President Vladimir Putin has falsely claimed that one of the reasons Russia invaded Ukraine was to stop a genocide being committed against Russian speakers.
“You know that in Ukraine you are not liberating anyone,” Reznikov said, claiming that Russian armed forces were “deceived and betrayed” when they were sent into Ukraine in February. “Many of you have already understood that you were not sent to die for a just cause. Maybe that’s why your [President] is hiding in a bunker, and not taking a punch next to you. He is afraid of your insight, contempt and your justified anger.”
Reznikov compared Putin to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky — who has been pictured with his country’s troops on the frontline. “Our President is with his army. Where is yours?” he asked.