Ukraine urges speedy delivery of tanks as Russian rockets kill five

ITV News Correspondent John Ray interviews a Ukrainian tank commander

Words by ITV News Multimedia Producer Connor Parker

A Ukrainian tank commander has urged the West to deliver tanks to the frontline in order to "do our job", in an interview with ITV News.

Ukraine's current stock of tanks is almost entirely Soviet-era and is increasingly unfit for the job.

"The machine is supposed to be ready every day to kill Russians, to protect our land from invaders," Tank Commander Vitaly told ITV News.

He said he "hoped" the tanks recently promised by the West would arrive in time to make a difference on the battlefield, adding the sooner they arrived the better.

He said: "Our families are sitting in the cities that are bombed by the rockets, that's why we need more weapons and we will do our job."

Five people were killed on Monday by Russian shelling as strikes hit Kharkiv and other areas.

The Ukrainian tank commander said the tanks needed to arrive soon. Credit: ITV News

Ukraine has asked for 300 tanks but so far despite offers from a host of western nations including the US, UK and Germany has not reached the goal.

They are also asking for fighter jets and even more advanced weaponry to fight the Russians.

Military analysts say more aid is crucial if Ukraine is to block an expected Russian spring offensive and launch its own effort to push back Russian forces.Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said keeping up the pace of allies’ support is crucial.

"The speed of supply has been, and will be, one of the key factors in this war. Russia hopes to drag out the war, to exhaust our forces. So we have to make time our weapon," he said during his nightly address.

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know