The slowdown of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine is intentional with a view to evacuating the population and avoiding casualties among civilians, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Tuesday.
Russia’s Armed Forces are creating humanitarian corridors and announcing ceasefires to ensure the safe evacuation of residents from encircled settlements, he said, despite this approach stalling the progress of the country’s forces.
“Of course, this slows down the pace of the offensive, but it is being done deliberately to avoid civilian casualties,” he explained at a meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) Council of Defense Ministers.
Unlike the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Shoigu said, Russian troops are not carrying out strikes on civilian infrastructure where there may be people nearby. Instead, identified firing positions and Ukrainian military facilities are being hit with “high-precision weapons,” he added.