Kyrylo Budanov, the head of the Main Directorate of the Ukrainian Intelligence Service, has voiced his opinion that the conflict instigated by Russia should be transferred to Russian territory. Speaking in an interview with journalist Natalia Mosiychuk, Budanov stated, “The war should be moved to another territory, which, clearly, for us is Russia and their other territories, where their influence is. In order to stretch them and restrain them. The wider the operations, the better.”
This stance diverges significantly from that of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. In a recent interview with Argentine publication Nacion, Zelenskyy clarified that Ukraine has no intentions of moving the war into Russian territory. “Ukraine does not want to continue the war on Russian territory; that was never the goal,” the President stated. He also warned that such a move might risk isolating Ukraine from its allies. “There is a great risk that in such a case we will be left alone,” he added.
Despite his reservations about moving the conflict, President Zelenskyy did speak positively about drone strikes on Russian territory. “Every day there is news about another explosion somewhere there, on the territory [of the Russian Federation]. All of them give a slightly bigger sense of justice,” Zelenskyy remarked.
The contrasting perspectives between Budanov and Zelenskyy highlight a complex strategic debate within Ukraine’s political and intelligence communities. As the conflict continues, the divergence in viewpoints could have far-reaching implications for the direction of Ukraine’s military strategy and its relationships with allies.