Day 385: Russia seizes 0.04 per cent of Ukraine’s territory in major offensive on February

Russia gained just 0.039 per cent of additional territory in Ukraine in February, the ISW told Insider. That’s despite its long-feared offensive starting that month. The Ukraine Defense Contact Group met virtually on Wednesday. The Razumkov Center released results of a fresh poll about whom Ukrainians trust.

Russia gains less than 0.04 per cent territory in Ukraine in February after new offensive begins, ISW says

Russia managed to increase the amount of territory it controls in Ukraine by less than 0.04 per cent in February, the same month it launched its long-awaited new offensive, experts say.

Washington DC-based think tank The Institute for the Study of War told Insider that its mapping data showed Russia had gained just 0.039 per cent more territory in Ukraine between January 31 and February 28. This was the equivalent of around 233.94 square kilometers (90.3 square miles). That territory increase is similar to what was reported by tracking group War Mapper, which said that Russia managed to increase the territory it controls in Ukraine by around 0.01 per cent in February, or about 85 square kilometers (32.8 square miles). The ISW told Insider that “both numbers are small enough” that a tiny miscalculation could be the reason why they are different, but that ultimately both accurately portray the limited state of Russia’s territory gains.

In mid-February, NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg said that Russia had already begun its long-awaited new offensive after stalling for several months.

Who do Ukrainians trust?

The vast majority (95.8 per cent) of Ukrainians trust in the Armed Forces. Five other most trusted institutions for Ukrainians are army supply and combat volunteers, the National Guard and the State Emergency Service. Ukraine’s president ranks sixth among the most trusted figures in the country.

These results are from a survey conducted by the sociological service of the Razumkov Center between February 2023 and March 2023. 

Ukrainians have most confidence in the military. They have more trust in the Armed Forces than they did before the invasion, with 95.8 per cent now versus 68 per cent in July-August 2021, director of the sociological service of the Razumkov Center Andriy Bychenko told a news conference at Ukrinform.

Ukrainians have high trust in volunteer organizations (87.9 per cent) and volunteer combat units (87.2 per cent). They also trust in the National Guard (85.7 per cent) and the State Emergency Service (85.4 per cent). Some 82.9 per cent of Ukrainians trust in President Volodymyr Zelenskyi, the survey finds.

Tenth meeting of Ukraine Defense Contact Group

The Ukraine Defense Contact Group met virtually on Wednesday, March 15. The tenth meeting brought together defense officials from more than 50 nations. The group previously met in Brussels, on February 14. 

Ahead of the meeting, Ukraine’s defense forces said which types of weapons Ukraine needs most to win on the battlefield and retake the territories captured by Russia.

“Because of the high intensity of fighting, and because Ukraine needs to defend and liberate the Russia-occupied territories, it needs both defensive and lethal weapons, provided by its international allies,” the Military Media Center said in a Telegram post.

Ukraine most needs additional rockets for HIMARS and MARS, 155mm shells, 120mm mortar rounds, missiles for air defense, missiles for anti-tank systems, aviation ordnance, loitering munitions (kamikaze drones), 105mm and 125mm tank rounds.

The Western weapons prove to be more effective on the battlefield than older Soviet pieces in service with the Russian military.

Why Latvia helps Ukraine so much? Ukraine in Flames #370

Latvia has always been an ally of Ukraine and demonstrated assistance at all levels – both the government and the non-governmental sector and society as a whole are involved in the provision of help. Latvia is also one of the most active countries that condemns russia’s aggression against Ukraine and advocates a strong international reaction against putin’s regime in form of economic sanctions. Watch Ukraine in flames #370 to find out about how Latvian society changed throughout this year and amplified their support and assistance to Ukraine.


  • Marija Golubeva, Fellow at Robert Bosch Academy (Berlin), former Minister of Interior of Latvia
  • Evija Djatkovica, Deputy Director of the Center of Geopolitical Studies Riga
  • Valeriy Oleniychuk, Volunteer, Co-founder of the “Ukrainian-Latvian Friendship” Society, Organizer of the “Fire of Victory” Campaign, Jurmala