Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy asked other nations to ban Russian energy exports; which he said are enabling Moscow’s invasion of his country.
“Oil is one of the two sources of Russian self-confidence, their sense of impunity,” he said in the late night address. “Another source — gas — will also be shut down over time. It’s just inevitable.”
Zelenskyy late Friday emphasized the need for a war crimes tribunal for Russia and for more weapons support to Ukraine.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson met with Zelenskyy in Kyiv; where he pledged more military and financial support to the embattled country.
London is sending armored vehicles and anti-ship missile systems ahead of an expected Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine.
Russian forces are concentrating their efforts in the country’s east as thousands of people try to flee the region.
Russian air attacks over Ukraine’s south and east are expected to increase in the coming days, though it continues to face stiff Ukrainian resistance.
Several world leaders have fiercely condemned a missile attack on an eastern Ukrainian train station in Kramatorsk that killed at least 52 people; with the EU introducing new sanctions on Russian individuals.
Zelenskyy renews plea for countries to send more weapons
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said he is committed to pressing for peace despite Russian attacks on civilians that have stunned the world, and he renewed his plea for countries to send more weapons ahead of an expected surge in fighting in the country’s east.
“No one wants to negotiate with a person or people who tortured this nation. It’s all understandable. And as a man, as a father, I understand this very well,” Zelenskyy said. But “we don’t want to lose opportunities, if we have them, for a diplomatic solution.”
Despite hopes for peace, Zelenskyy acknowledged that he must be “realistic” about the prospects for a swift resolution given that negotiations have so far been limited to low-level talks that do not include Russian President Vladimir Putin.
He displayed a palpable sense of resignation and frustration; when asked whether the supplies of weapons and other equipment his country has received from the United States and other Western nations was enough to turn the tide of the war.
“Not yet,” he said, switching to English for emphasis. “Of course it’s not enough.”
Still, he noted that there has been increased support from Europe and said deliveries of U.S. weapons have been accelerating.