President Volodymyr Zelensky
President Volodymyr Zelensky has acknowledged battlefield progress has been “slower than desired”, weeks into Ukraine’s military offensive to recapture areas occupied by Russia.
“Some people believe this is a Hollywood movie and expect results now. It’s not,” he told the BBC.
According to Ukraine, its counter-offensive has reclaimed eight villages in the southern region of Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk to the east.
Mr Zelensky said the military push was not going easily because 77,220 sq miles of Ukrainian territory had been mined by Russian forces.
He reinforced the need for Ukraine to be given security guarantees from Nato but said ultimately the goal was membership of the defensive alliance.
Ukraine’s economy shrank by 29.2% in 2022 and earlier this year the World Bank estimated the cost of reconstruction and recovery at $411bn (£339bn).