Espreso. Global

Ukraine-based Russian fighters enter ethnically Ukrainian territories - expert Bobyrenko

15 March, 2024 Friday

Victor Bobyrenko, an expert at the Bureau of Analysis and Policy, draws attention to the historical component of current events on the Ukrainian-Russian border. He explains that the villages of the Belgorod region have deep Ukrainian roots

He said this on Espreso TV.

"Where the Russian Volunteer Corps has entered - Tetkino and our Ryzhivka - there is even one street, one road, you don't even notice how you get from Ukraine to Russia. I don't think there will be any military effect from this, it's just a political effect before the elections, to show Scholz that he shouldn't be afraid to give us Taurus missiles if we are already stepping on Russia's soil. It may not be the Ukrainian Armed Forces, but it is the Russian Volunteer Corps, which is allied to us, and it is equipped and armed by the state of Ukraine, let's be honest," Bobyrenko said.

The expert added that the Russian Federation has already reported the elimination of 300 Russian volunteers, although they did not have large troops there: "This proves that, in fact, they do not expect our offensives, they do not expect us to enter the Russian Federation and that they can go in, but we will not go in. Moreover, in 2022, when we first came to the border, they shelled us for the first month, we did not respond, it happened. It has passed. Now, if they shoot at us, our people don't hesitate to respond.”

Bobyrenko explained the historical component of this issue.

"So that we understand why they went to Tetkino and why they succeeded. First of all, I would like to tell the audience that Tetkino, Sudzha, Graivoron are all Slobozhanshchyna, all Ukrainian ethnic villages, and they speak the same surzhyk (Ukrainian–Russian pidgin used in certain regions of Ukraine and the neighboring regions of Russia - Ed.) language as I do,” he emphasized.

He recalled how in the 2000s he visited and studied the Ukrainian-Russian borderland in the Belgorod region with students, and how the residents considered themselves Ukrainians more than twenty years ago: "Now it's different, because propaganda is working, many people still speak surzhyk and consider themselves Russian.”

What is known about raids by Russian volunteers

On the morning of March 12, members of the Freedom of Russia Legion from the Russian-Ukrainian border announced that they were going to liberate Russia from dictator Vladimir Putin. Soldiers of the Siberian Battalion reported fierce fighting on Russian territory, and the Freedom of Russia claimed to have taken control of the village of Tetkino, Kursk region.

Oleksiy Hetman, a reserve major of the National Guard of Ukraine and a veteran of the Russian-Ukrainian war, believes that the raid by the Freedom of Russia Legion is a challenge to Putin and his entourage. In his opinion, if at least one battalion of the Russian Federation goes over to the side of the Russians fighting against Putin, a chain reaction could start throughout the army.

On March 13, Russian volunteers continued their raid on Russian territory, calling on residents of the Kursk and Belgorod regions to evacuate.

Later, Alexei Baranovsky said that in the Kursk region, fighting was already taking place outside the village of Tetkino.

Yevhen Dykyi, a former platoon commander of the Aidar battalion, believes that Russians may move combat-ready units from the Kupyansk direction to the Kursk region.

On the morning of March 14, the Russian Defense Ministry accused Ukraine of allegedly attacking two regions with 14 drones. Later, Belgorod reported a second attack.

On March 14, a volunteer of the Freedom of Russia Legion, Alexei Baranovsky, said that the Russian army had moved reserves to Belgorod and Kursk regions and was actively trying to displace Russian volunteer units. The Freedom of Russia Legion warned the locals about the beginning of active attacks.

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