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Putin 'could declare war' on May 9 in final push to defeat Ukraine, minister warns

WorldPutin 'could declare war' on May 9 in final push to defeat Ukraine, minister warns

Speaking to LBC, Mr Wallace said that he would “not be surprised” if Putin uses Russia’s May 9 celebrations, which mark the day the Soviet Union overcame Nazi Germany, to “mass mobilise the Russian people” against the world. He said he thinks it is possible that Putin could demand that more people join the Russian offensive so as to expand the fight beyond the Ukrainian stage. 

Speaking to Nick Ferrari on LBC, he said: “We’ve seen a number of statements from Putin recently where he says, you know: ‘This is becoming a war. This is a proxy war’, which it is not. 

“‘Nazis are everywhere, basically. They’re not just in Ukraine. NATO is full of Nazis’. 

“And I think what he’s gonna try and do is move from his quote unquote special operation, he’s been laying the ground for him to say: ‘Look, this is now a war against Nazi’s and what I need is more people, more Russian cannon-fodder, basically’. 

“His generals have led so many to their deaths already that I would not be surprised, though I don’t have any information on this, if he declares on this May Day that ‘We are now at war with the world’s Nazis and we need to mass mobilise the Russian people’.” 

Victory Day in Russia, held on May 9, is the country’s largest public holiday and a symbol of national pride. 

Last year, more than 12,000 soldiers, 190 pieces of hardware and 80 military planes were on display for the parade. 

Fears have arisen that Putin might try to use the celebrations to launch a wide scale offensive, mobilising more troops.  

Russian commandement have reportedly been telling their soldiers that the war in Ukraine must end in time for the parade, according to intelligence from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 

READ MORE: Putin’s ‘middle finger’ to UN as Kyiv is bombed during visit from UN [REPORT] 

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 and it has been reported that Putin believed the conflict would be over in a matter of weeks. 

Dubbed as a “special military operation”, forces advanced on the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv but were unable to break into the city. 

Putin’s soldiers have now retreated to the eastern regions of the Donbas to reclaim territory closer to Russia as the war enters into its third month. 

Ukrainian estimates suggest that more than 20,000 Russian soldiers have died during the conflict, though that number could be higher. 

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