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Kremlin likely attempting to reintroduce Russian info operation aimed at falsely portraying Russia as being open to negotiations – ISW
KYIV. March 1 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The Kremlin is likely attempting to reintroduce a Russian information operation aimed at falsely portraying Russia as being open to negotiations while the collective West refuses to negotiate, according to a report of the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) for February 28.
“Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov stated on February 28 that Russian officials are open to negotiations to end the war in Ukraine but that Ukraine and the West must recognize new “territorial realities” associated with Russia’s illegal annexation of occupied territories in Ukraine,” the report reads.
The Kremlin appears to be using Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko as a conduit to reengage with this information operation, likely in pursuit of negotiations on favorable terms to Russia and further delays in the West’s provision of critical weapons systems to Ukraine.
At the same time, the analysts say, the Kremlin may be reintroducing the negotiations information operation to reduce the effectiveness of future Ukrainian counteroffensives by delaying the provision of essential Western aid and to seek to gain concessions before potential further setbacks in Ukraine.
In addition, the Institute noted that the top US defense official supported ISW’s continued assessment that Russia is extraordinarily unlikely to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine. ISW has assessed that Russian invocations of nuclear threats and nuclear doctrine are part of an information operation meant to “discourage” Ukraine and the West but do not represent any material Russian intent to employ nuclear weapons.
Analysts note that Moscow has also stepped up its other information operations, in particular, related to the escalation in Transdniestria temporarily occupied by Russian occupiers and the conduct of hostilities by Russians in this region under a false flag (which is necessary to accuse other countries of escalation), as well as nuclear and chemical safety.
Speaking about the situation on the battlefield, analysts report that the Russian occupiers continue to try to conduct offensive operations in the area of Svatove and Kreminna, as well as in the area of Bakhmut.
The Ukrainian army repels the invaders’ attacks and strikes at their positions in the rear.