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Putin: US to Force Kiev's Draft Age Down to 18 Then Remove Zelensky

© AP Photo / Efrem LukatskyПрезидент Украины Владимир Зеленский
Президент Украины Владимир Зеленский - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.06.2024
The Russian president engaged in discussions with leaders of major international news agencies on Wednesday at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).
Washington will compel Ukraine's leadership to lower the draft age to 18, then sack Volodymyr Zelensky, stated Russian President Vladimir Putin.
"I think that the US administration will compel the leadership of Ukraine to make these decisions - to lower the draft age to 18, and then get rid of Zelensky... To accomplish all of this, I believe it will take a year," Putin stated.
Ukrainian military medics try to give first aid to a soldier heavily wounded in a battle near Kremennaya in the Lugansk region, Russia, Friday, Jan. 13, 2023 - Sputnik International, 1920, 27.05.2024
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Speaking about monthly losses in the conflict, Putin said that Ukraine's losses amount to over 50,000 per month, including losses in the rear.
"This is associated with significant loss. I said 50,000, but this is the most modest estimate. These are 50,000, this is what we see on the battlefield. And if we consider that there are also losses that we know exist, we just can't count them. They are in the rear, in the depth, actually, it's more," Putin said.
Putin noted that what is currently happening in Ukraine is total mobilization, but it does not solve the problem. "About 30,000, in the previous and penultimate years - somewhere around 50-55,000, according to our data, they recruited. But this does not solve the problem. Do you know why? Because all this mobilization only covers losses, it all goes to replenish losses," he said.
"This is such a fundamental problem that leads to lowering the draft age. Now they've gone from 27 to 25, and we just know this from the Ukrainian side, there it's an 'open secret', there are no secrets at all. The US administration insists that the threshold should gradually decrease from 25 to 23, then to 20 years old, and then to 18. Or immediately to 18 years old," he added.
Ukrainian servicemen help to evacuate a wounded soldier on Aug. 30, 2023.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.06.2024
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The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) is taking place from June 5 to 8.
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