Ukraine faces a critical shortage of air defense systems, which has been the main reason for the Russian advance towards Kharkiv. Additionally, the long wait for assistance from the United States played a significant role.

This was reported by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky during a meeting with journalists.

“The Russian crossing of the border is linked to the lack of air defense systems. They operate at a distance where they have an advantage, using aerial bombs and artillery… 8 months of delays in decision-making by our partners. It is clear that our soldiers have had a tough time”, he said.

The President of Ukraine emphasized that everything is currently under the control of the Defense Forces and the situation has been stabilized. The deepest point of the occupiers’ advance is currently 10 kilometers. According to Zelensky, the Russians have not been able to advance at all in some directions.

“In addition to wanting a 10-kilometer zone, they always aim to develop any success they achieve. But the main thing today is that the situation has been stabilized by our Defense Forces”, added the president.

Zelensky noted that the primary target for the Russians remains Vovchansk. In his statement, the president emphasized that three lines of defense have been built in the Kharkiv region. The occupiers are currently stuck at the first one. “No one has reached the concrete line of defense; it’s nonsense what they say. The enemy has reached the first line. The first line is not the border; it’s impossible to build there because of the corresponding weapons used by the Russians, which caused our people to die”, Zelensky explained.

He stressed that the first two lines of defense were built by the military under constant fire. The construction of the third line was the responsibility of the local authorities.

“It is the most powerful—not because they are better than the military, but simply because it is further from the weapons, shells, and shelling”, said the president.

Recently, Zelensky held a meeting in Kharkiv. He was briefed on the operational situation at the front, particularly in the areas of Vovchansk and Lyptsi, by Commander-in-Chief Oleksandr Syrskyi, Commander of the Khortytsia Operational-Strategic Group of Forces Yuriy Sodolya, and Commander of the Kharkiv Operational-Tactical Group Mykhailo Drapaty.

The meeting also analyzed the prospects of the combat situation, threats over the coming days, and the possibilities for countering the occupiers.

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