Ukraine President calls on ‘friends’ from abroad to help fight Russian invasion of the capital
Ukraine’s president said his forces still have control of the capital, but has called on the country’s “friends” to help them fight.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in an address this afternoon: “Everyone who can defend Ukraine abroad please do it directly in a united way.
“Every friend of Ukraine who wants to join Ukraine in defending the country please come over, we will give you weapons.”
According to Sky News, it comes after he appeared in a social media video from the streets of the capital this morning to counter claims he had taken up an American offer to evacuate.
UK Ministry of Defence said the “bulk of Russian forces” are now around 19 miles from the city centre, as they “continue their advance”, whilst Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko claimed “there are no Russian troops in the capital” but “subversive groups” are active.
As reported by Reuters, a Kremlin spokesperson Dmitriy Peskov told a briefing that Russia had expected the sanctions imposed by the West in response to the invasion and was taking measures to minimise their impact on the economy.
Peskov also revealed that Russian troops started advancing today after President Vladimir Putin paused the offensive a day earlier in anticipation of talks with Kyiv that never happened.
Boris Johnson has praised plans for extra military and humanitarian support to be sent to Ukraine, with more than 25 countries joining the UK in providing supplies.
The agreement to provide Ukraine with supplies, including ammunition, anti-tank weapons and humanitarian support was made at a meeting on Friday by Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.
According to the BBC, the prime minister said he was “pleased even more allies have come forward with defensive and humanitarian aid”, adding: “We must stand with the Ukrainian people as they defend their countries and democracies everywhere.”
In a rare public comment on political crises, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge said that they stand with the people of Ukraine.
The couple took to Twitter to express solidarity with President Volodymyr Zelensky, having met him and his wife back in 2020. “Today we stand with the president and all of Ukraine’s people as they bravely fight for that future”, they said.
The UK has also held vigils for Ukraine, including light displays in the Ukrainian flag.