MOSCOW, August 27. /TASS/. Russia is conducting a special military operation in Ukraine in line with a moderate scenario, when the Russian armed forces and the troops of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics act only against the Ukrainian military. Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said this in an interview with Darius Rochebin on the French TV channel LCI.
A tougher scenario would have made it possible to complete the campaign faster, but Moscow did not agree to this for humanitarian reasons, Medvedev added.
"We understand that it [the special operation] is now proceeding in line with the most sparing, moderate option. Our country, as well as the forces of the Donetsk Republic and the Lugansk Republic, act only against the armed forces of Ukraine," he said.
"If the situation had been different [and the special military operation had not been carried out according to a moderate scenario], then, as you understand, this military campaign could have ended much faster. But there would have been completely different consequences for Ukraine," the politician stressed. Medvedev explained that "its infrastructure would be completely destroyed, decision-making centers, authorities and so on would be destroyed." "We didn't go for that option," he stressed.
The Deputy Head of the Security Council drew attention to the fact that Russia was forced to escalate the situation in Ukraine.
"I want to say one thing: if we had not been forced, then there would have been no actions like a special military operation," he said, noting that the armed conflict could have been avoided, "if the Ukrainian leadership had gained courage and recognized the realities, if the Ukrainian leadership would not have persecuted its own population in Donetsk and Lugansk for eight years, if there had not been thousands of victims of Ukrainian citizens and Russian citizens who live there, if NATO had not provoked Ukraine’s North Atlantic aspirations."
On February 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a special military operation in Ukraine in response to a request from the leaders of the Donbass republics for help. After that, the US, the EU, the UK, as well as a number of other states imposed sweeping sanctions against Russia and beefed up arms supplies to the Ukrainian authorities.