Ukrainian military command expected that Russia would begin its offensive from the Donbas.
However, the Ukrainian Armed Forces were also ready to meet the enemy in the north of Ukraine, said Brigadier General Dmytro Krasilnikov, commander of the Operational Command North.
Ukrainian defenders believed that Russia could launch an assault from the eastern regions of Ukraine. Its troops would be supported by the units from the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics and mercenaries.
"We still thought and, one might say, hoped that the enemy would begin its military actions from the occupied part of the territory of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions. Until the last moment, we believed that our enemy would not resort to large-scale aggression on all fronts, all frontiers. We hoped for the best, but prepared for the worst," the general said.
However, Krasilnikov added that the units of Operational Command North were ready for combat operations, and the enemy's offensive was not a surprise.
"That is, the first blow that fell on the weaker areas was unsuccessful for the enemy and we retained our main combat power. And this allowed us to inflict serious losses on the enemy," the general said.
The General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces reported earlier that Russian troops plan to resume the offensive in the northeaster direction. For this purpose, Russia gathered 20 battalion tactical groups.