“After every Russian attack, we restore the system as far as possible,” Zelenskyy said in his daily video address on Monday evening. Everything is being done to bring new equipment into the country and repair the damage. Nevertheless, it should be borne in mind that Russia has not given up its tactics. “The absence of massive rocket attacks only means that the enemy is preparing for new ones and can strike at any time,” Zelenskyy said.

According to estimates by the Ukrainian military intelligence service, Russia still has an arsenal of around 360 cruise missiles. This would be enough for at least five waves of attacks, said spokesman Vadim Skibizkyj.

For weeks, the Russian armed forces have been targeting the entire energy infrastructure with missiles and so-called kamikaze drones. As a result, massive failures in the water and power supply are the order of the day. This tactic is primarily intended to wear down the civilian population in winter and stir up unrest.

Leaflets in the Russian-occupied city of Melitopol presumably point to a Ukrainian counter-offensive. According to the journalist Viktor Kovalenko, Ukrainian partisans distributed them throughout the city to prepare the residents for the approaching recapture. Similar leaflets were also distributed before the liberation of Cherson. This would have helped save many lives, Kovalenko said.

The G7 countries pledged their continued support to Ukraine in its defensive struggle against Russia. The states are still firmly on the side of Ukraine, said Chancellor Scholz on Monday evening in Berlin after a switching conference with the other heads of state and government and the Ukrainian President Selenskyj. They will support Ukraine “as long as it is necessary”. At the same time, the economic pressure on Russia is kept high.

On behalf of the G7, the Chancellor again called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to “stop the senseless killing in Ukraine and withdraw his troops”.

Russia’s President Putin has signed a law that earmarks over nine trillion rubles for defense, security and law enforcement in the 2023 budget. This is reported by the British Ministry of Defence.

According to the World Bank, this amount corresponds to around eight percent of Russia’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2021. Defense spending would have increased enormously and would account for around 30 percent of GDP in the 2023 budget. So Putin continues to invest Russia’s money in the war, while Russian campaigns at home and abroad may have to pause. The Institute for the Study of War has long suspected that Russian forces are shifting equipment and personnel from other conflict zones, such as Syria and Nagorno-Karabakh, and may be shelving other combat involvements in favor of maintaining the war in Ukraine.

Zelenskyi indirectly suggested to Moscow that the occupying forces should be withdrawn from Ukraine by Christmas. With this step, Russia can show its true intentions, Zelenskyy said in a video link to the G7 summit in Berlin on Monday. Should Russia withdraw its armies from Ukraine, this would ensure a reliable cessation of hostilities. “And I see no reason why Russia isn’t doing it now, at Christmas. The answer from Moscow will show what they really want there,” Zelenskyj was quoted as saying by the Unian state agency.

That will be important on Tuesday

The EU states have just agreed in Brussels on a billion-euro package for Ukraine, which has been badly hit by the war – now emergency aid for the winter is to be mobilized at an international conference in Paris. At the meeting on Tuesday with representatives from around 70 countries, international organizations and the European Union, the focus is on repairing the infrastructure destroyed by the Russian war of aggression, above all the power and heat supply. On Monday, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Schmyhal estimated the extent of the damage to the power grid at one billion dollars.

Also Read: The December 12 Ukraine Update