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‘The west can change the outcome’: plea for heavy weapons on Ukraine frontline

By Luke Harding

31 May 2022 · 5 min read

A stack of deadly weapons line the corridor next to Roman Kostenko’s office in the southern Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv. Giant tube-like Javelin missiles and a powerful-looking green cylinder. “That’s an NLAW anti-tank weapon supplied by Britain,” Kostenko – a member of Ukraine’s parliament and a special forces commander – explained. “We’ve used it.”

When Russia invaded on 24 February, Kostenko was in Kyiv. He swapped his politician’s outfit of suit and tie for a uniform and hurried to Mykolaiv on the southern frontline. By this point Russian troops had practically encircled the city and its port on the Bug River. They had seized Mykolaiv’s airport and were advancing from the north-east. “I was the last car in,” he said.

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