Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited Bucha, where

Russia said Thursday that it plans to raise defence spending by almost 70 per cent next year, funnelling massive resources into its Ukraine offensive to fight what it calls a "hybrid war" unleashed by the West.

With Moscow's "special military operation" now approaching another winter, both sides have been digging deep and procuring weapons from allies in preparation for a protracted conflict.

The announcement came as NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg and the defence ministers of Britain and France visited Kyiv, where President Volodymyr Zelensky lobbied for more air defence systems.

"We need to get through this winter together, to protect our energy infrastructure and people's lives," Zelensky told Stoltenberg, warning of a fresh campaign of Russian attacks after last year's strikes left millions short of water and heating.

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