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Two years after initiating its invasion of Ukraine, a Top Russian official is now openly characterizes the situation as a “war.” Initially branded as a “special military operation” aimed at Ukraine’s “demilitarization and denazification,” the Kremlin’s stance has shifted.

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In a statement, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, “We are in a state of war. Yes, it started out as a special military operation, but as soon as this group was formed, when the collective West became a participant in this on the side of Ukraine, it became a war for us. I am convinced of that. And everyone should understand this, for their internal motivation.”

The timing of these remarks is particularly noteworthy following the re-election of Russian President Vladimir Putin and a significant uptick in military activities targeting Ukrainian infrastructure. Overnight, Russia launched one of its largest missile and drone barrages on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure. According to Ukrainian officials, at least 10 of the country’s regions were struck. 

Despite this change in terminology, Peskov clarified that Russia’s legal stance on the conflict remains unchanged, continuing to classify its actions as a “special military operation.”


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