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Rostislav Smirnov, advisor to the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, said Wednesday that Russia “shot itself in the foot” with the announcement of a “partial mobilization” and stressed that “from a certain point of view, it is positive” for Kiev.
“I would say that, from a certain point of view, it is positive news. It is a powerful shot in the foot on the part of Russia. We have to understand that we are experiencing a historic moment when Russia begins to recognize its losses in the east,” he said, Ukrinform Ukrainian news agency reported.
Thus, he said that the decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin is a “call for help” because “they do not have enough people” and “they are being defeated” in Ukraine, while arguing that the move will unleash “extremely strong” internal criticism.
“This process (…) will provoke a huge wave of negativity directly in Russia, which can lead to very serious events. In the near future we will see the consequences of this process,” explained Smirnov, who also pointed to a split within the Kremlin decision-making concerning the situation in the war.
In this regard, he has argued that the Russian Army “is destroyed” and lacks “combat capability.” “There will be in the long term very serious consequences in the internal political situation in Russia, which will directly mean something extremely positive for us,” the Interior Ministry adviser concluded.
For his part, the advisor to the Ukrainian Presidency, Mikhail Podoliak, has ironized on his account on the social network Twitter about Putin’s decision. “Everything is still going according to plan, isn’t it? Life has a great sense of humor,” he noted.
“Day number 210 of the ‘three-day war’. Russians who demanded the destruction of Ukraine end up receiving mobilization, closing of borders, blocking of bank accounts and imprisonment for desertion,” he has noted.
Earlier on Tuesday, the lower house of Russia’s parliament had approved a series of amendments to the Criminal Code to toughen prison sentences for acts committed during wartime, including surrender, desertion and looting.
The bill, which includes the concepts “mobilization,” “martial law” and “period of war,” previously not mentioned in the Russian Criminal Code, will be reviewed Wednesday by the Federation Council — the upper house — for approval and forwarded to the president for ratification.