“I am the first target of Russia and my family the second, but I am not going to leave Kiev”. This is how forceful Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelensky expressed himself this morning about the war being waged in his country, while assuring that “Vladimir Putin wants to destroy the country politically” and behead the current government leadership to put a puppet.
As Russian troops encircle Kiev, Zelenski has denounced that Ukraine is defending itself from the attack while “the most powerful country in the world looks from a distance,” he said in reference to the United States and its decision not to intervene militarily in the conflict.
The Ukrainian government, in parallel, has ordered to mobilize all men over 18 years of age to defend the country from the Russian advance that, as explained by Zelenski, has claimed at least 137 lives in the first 24 hours of offensive.
“According to preliminary data, unfortunately we have already lost 137 of our heroes, our citizens, ten of them officers. 316 were injured,” said the president, visibly tired, in a new address to the nation.
“Today Russia attacked the entire territory of Ukraine. And today our defenders have done a lot,” he added. ” The enemy attacks not only military installations, as he claims, but also civilians. They kill people and turn peaceful cities into military targets. This is vile and will never be forgiven,” he said.
The Ukrainian president has also assured to have data on sabotage groups sent by Russia to Kiev.
“I ask the Kievites to be careful, to follow the curfew. I remain in the government quarter with all those who are necessary for the work of the central government,” he concluded.
Zelensky regretted once again that no one had given him a clear answer about Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO.