That looks like a possible turning point in Moscow’s seven-month war against Ukraine: President Vladimir V. Putin, with Russia reeling from losses on the battlefield, will give a speech. right in front of the whole country.
Russian state media figures spectacularly touted the upcoming speech for several hours on Tuesday. Rumors swirled that he could announce some kind of escalation of the war, as he did threatened in a press conference last week.
And then… they announced that it was postponed.
“Are you waiting?” Margarita Simonyan, editor of the state television network RT, Written on Telegram at 9:37 p.m. Moscow time on Tuesday.
“Go to sleep,” she Written 42 minutes later.
There was no official explanation from the Kremlin as to why the speech was delayed – or even if it was even planned in advance. But come a day when the Russian occupation authorities in 4 regions of Ukraine announced a “referendum” starting Friday on joining Russia, the back-and-forth attack reported breakneck speed. – and the obvious improvisation – with which the Kremlin is planning its next moves.
Analysts say the referendums would be a prelude to Russia’s territorial annexation – at which point Moscow could announce it would consider any further attacks on those areas. areas still controlled by Ukraine, as an attack on Russia itself, and the threat of nuclear retaliation.
In addition, Russia’s parliament on Tuesday passed a law introducing the concepts of “mobilization” and “martial law” into Russia’s penal code – fueling speculation that Mr Putin could officially declare war. and put out a nationwide draft.
Oleksiy Arestovych, an adviser to the President of Ukraine, tweeted during a speech at the Kremlin: “Those who could not give a speech organized a campaign.
Late on Tuesday night in Moscow, several Russian media personalities said that Putin’s upcoming speech said it would take place on Wednesday.
“Wake up at around eight o’clock,” cryptic Dmitri Smirnov, a pro-Kremlin journalist who covers Putin. Written.
Analysts leave open the possibility that the Kremlin has yet to decide exactly what Putin will say. But some argue that a delay could mean an escalation of the war.
“The longer the appearance of President Putin is announced, the more serious the announcements will be,” said pro-Kremlin analyst who regularly appears on state television, Sergei Markov, posted on Telegram.