Russian dictator has a year of bad luck - Stoltenberg

15:11 23 December Kyiv, Ukraine

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg wrote in a Financial Times column that 2022 was a year of hard setbacks for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

According to Stoltenberg, Putin made two big strategic mistakes by launching a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
 
"Putin underestimated Ukraine. He thought he could take Kyiv and "decapitate" the government within a few days. Ten months later, the Ukrainian people, armed forces and leadership continue to defend their homeland with the skill, courage and determination that inspire the world," he called the Russian dictator's first mistake.
 
The NATO Secretary General illustrated his conclusions with eloquent figures: tens of thousands of Russian servicemen were wounded and killed; about 1 million people left Russia, and the country itself became noticeably poorer and more isolated than before the invasion of Ukraine.

Putin's second mistake, according to Stoltenberg, was that he underestimated the unity of NATO.
 
"He thought he could divide us and keep us from supporting Ukraine. Although NATO is not a party to this conflict, Allies are more united than ever in providing unprecedented military assistance to support Ukraine's right to self-defence, enshrined in the UN charter, and help it remain a free and democratic country.