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CIA director says Russia’s Ukraine invasion is a failure

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William Burns says Vladimir Putin ‘profoundly wrong in his assumptions’ as Kyiv’s counteroffensive continues

The head of the CIA has said Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine can already be judged as a failure, as Ukrainian troops continue a counteroffensive against Russian occupying forces in the north-east of the country.

William Burns said Putin had underestimated Ukrainian resolve when he decided to invade in February and was now making the same mistake when it came to international support for Kyiv.

“Putin’s bet right now is that he is going to be tougher than the Ukrainians, the Europeans, the Americans … I believe, and my colleagues at CIA believe, that Putin is as wrong about that bet as he was profoundly wrong in his assumptions going back to last February about Ukrainian will to resist,” Burns said at a conference in Washington, in comments reported by the New York Times.

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