The head of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Major General Kyrylo Budanov, said that Russian authorities are ready to lose Crimea.
Earlier, Budanov predicted that in the coming months, Ukrainian troops would enter the territory of Crimea, which would begin its complete liberation from the Russians. He noted that no nuclear strike would happen in this case.
The journalists asked Budanov why he was so optimistic, even though other Ukrainian officials do not share this opinion.
"I use a completely different logic. I can afford to open a folder, look at numbers, dynamics, charts, follow events, look at classified information that you won’t see elsewhere. Therefore, I understand what is happening in reality, and not the way I want to see it, or I don't want to see it," Budanov said in an interview with RBC-Ukraine.
The head of the Main Intelligence Directorate said he does not understand why so much attention is given to the Crimean Peninsula, since the end of the war will happen only after Ukraine regains control over all its territories as of 1991. Crimea is only part of Ukrainian territory, and de-occupation will take place gradually, over time.
"We still have time. If Crimea is the last to be taken, this is the end. If Crimea is the first to be taken, and the Donbas is not yet taken, then this is not the end. There is only one way to end this war. This is to regain control of our borders in any form, the borders of 1991. It is impossible, unrealistic to end this war without solving territorial problems. Ukraine will never agree to give up any part of its territory," he assured.
Kyrylo Budanov suggested in the interview that the loss of Crimea will be painful but not intolerable loss for the Kremlin.
He noted that the loss of Kherson by Russian troops in November last year showed how the Russian propaganda machine works. This was presented to Russians as an ordinary thing, although capturing Kherson in the beginning of the war was presented as the biggest success of the Russian Armed Forces. This will most likely be the case with the Crimean Peninsula.
"And they turned it around in such a way that it was a good thing for them. That is, they have already prepared everything. Models on how to serve the news during the events in the Crimea, they already have everything. They are well known to us. Believe me, they work for their public. And here they will say it’s a "forced step" and in general it brings almost happiness. Believe me, the propaganda machine works there as a standard, it is really a model. They are "fooling" their population like no one else in the world can," Kyrylo Budanov summed up.