Good health to you, fellow Ukrainians!
Today, the first liberation of our warriors from Russian captivity took place this year. 50 Ukrainians returned home. 33 officers, 17 - privates and sergeants. Among them are defenders of the Kyiv and Donetsk regions, Mariupol and the south of the country. Soldiers of the army, National Guard, territorial defense, navy, border guards.
Our team works without a single break to free Ukrainians. Today I want to thank them once again: Budanov, Yermak, Malyuk, Usov, Lubinets and others.
I am especially grateful to those of our units who replenish the exchange fund. Everyone who captures the enemy on our land, gives an opportunity to return freedom to some Ukrainians.
I would also like to note the success of our Air Forces. Since the beginning of this day, three helicopters and also drones have been shot down. Well done, guys! Thank you for the consistent demilitarization of the aggressor state.
The situation on the frontline has not changed significantly in the first week of the year. Heavy fighting continues in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions - every hotspot in these areas is well known.
Bakhmut is holding out against all odds. And although most of the city is destroyed by Russian strikes, our warriors repel constant attempts at Russian offensive there. Soledar is holding out. Although there is even more destruction there and it is extremely hard...
There is no such piece of land near these two cities, where the occupier would not have given his life for the crazy ideas of the masters of the Russian regime. This is one of the bloodiest places on the frontline.
Today, commander of the direction, General Syrskyi, visited the troops defending the outskirts of Bakhmut and Soledar.
He awarded the warriors for their resilience. On the spot, he organized the steps necessary to strengthen our defense. In particular, transfer of additional units. And intensification of fire on the invaders.
We should understand that all our positions, all our actions in defense are interconnected, and the resilience and effectiveness of actions at the front in general depends on the resilience and effectiveness of actions at each point of the front.
I thank all our defenders who act in this way, who realize that their personal resilience, their personal strength and effectiveness give resilience, strength and effectiveness to the whole state. We defend the whole state, wherever the battles for it take place.
We are preparing for diplomatic events that we have planned for this week. We expect good news for our country, good decisions that will further strengthen the defense.
The world has seen again these days that Russia lies even when it draws attention to the situation at the front with its own statements. Russian shelling of Kherson with incendiary ammunition right after Christmas. Strikes on Kramatorsk and other cities of Donbas - exactly on civilian objects and exactly when Moscow reported on the alleged "silence" of their army. More threats of Russian officials to Europe and the world…
All this was when Moscow was talking about the alleged "truce".
No attempt by Russia to manipulate diplomacy and politics will ever work again.
Only the strengthening of Ukraine, only the successes of Ukraine, only the restoration of territorial integrity of Ukraine, only the return of all our people from Russian captivity are the guarantees of peace. We are bringing it closer every day.
Glory to all who fight and work for the victory of our state!
Glory to all who help our state!
Eternal memory to all who gave their lives for our state and our independence!
Glory to Ukraine!