Stop playing with Russia, stop the war: Zhelensky tells the West

  • Ukraine’s president criticizes EU, insists on tougher sanctions
  • ‘Stop playing’ with Russia, end ‘unconscious war’ – Zhelensky
  • The EU summit could lead to a split over sanctions
  • The head of the Ukrainian Armed Forces is demanding more weapons
  • Russia warns Western nations against giving up long-range weapons

KYIV, May 27 (Reuters) – President Volodymyr Zhelensky has called on the West to suspend playing with Russia and impose tough sanctions on the West to end its “ignorant war” in Ukraine, saying his country will remain independent. Price.

Zelenskiy’s criticism of the West has intensified in recent days as the European Union moves slowly towards a possible Russian oil embargo and thousands of Russian troops attempt to encircle the two eastern cities of Zhivrodonetsk and Lychisansk.

Within three months of the invasion of Ukraine, Russia dropped its attack on the capital, Kiev, and sought to consolidate control of the industrial eastern Donbass region, which has supported the separatist insurgency since 2014.

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Western military analysts see the war for Siverodonetsk and Lyczynsk as a possible turning point in the war after the Ukrainian garrison surrendered to Mariupol and shifted pace towards Russia.

“Ukraine will always be an independent country, it will not be broken. The only question is what price our people will pay for their freedom, the only question is what price Russia is going to pay for this foolish war against us,” Zelenskiy said. Thursday night time address.

“If the situation in Ukraine is treated as if the world were facing the same situation, the catastrophic events could still be stopped if the forces do not play with Russia and actually push for an end to the war.”

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Zelenskiy complained that there were differences within the EU over additional sanctions against Russia and asked why some countries were allowed to block the program.

The European Union is discussing a sixth round of sanctions, including a ban on Russian oil imports. This requires consensus but Hungary opposes the idea on the grounds that its economy will be severely affected. read more

One of Hungary’s top aides said it would take 3-1 / 2 to 4 years for Hungary to recover from Russia’s crude oil crisis and, as long as there was an agreement on all issues, could not support the EU’s proposed oil embargo.

Zhelensky said Russia receives one billion euros a day from the 27-nation bloc for energy supplies.

“How many more weeks will the EU try to agree on a sixth package?” He asked.

“The pressure on Russia is really a matter of saving lives. Every day procrastination, weakness, various controversies or proposals to ‘appease’ the occupier at the expense of the victim indicate that more Ukrainians are being killed.”

Zelenskiy’s comments mark the second day following his sharpening of his critique of the world’s approach to war.

On Wednesday, he strongly suggested that Kiev make concessions in an attempt to pacify Nazi Germany in 1938. read more

The EU summit on May 30-31 will see divisions between members who want a tougher stance on Russia and those calling for a ceasefire. read more

Advancing Russians

On Thursday, the Ukrainian military said Russian forces had launched a three-pronged offensive to encircle Ukrainian forces in Siverodonetsk and Lysyansk. If the two cities across the Shivarsky Donets River fall, the Donbass Province in Luhansk will all be under Russian control.

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Russia’s Donbass advance was supported by massive artillery shelling. The Ukrainian military says it has shelled 50 cities in Donetsk and Luhansk provinces on Thursday.

Luhansk Governor Sergei Kaitoi said five civilians had been killed in Siverodonetsk in 24 hours.

On Thursday, about 150 people were buried in a mass grave in the Lysyansk district, because it is very dangerous for families to collect bodies and bury them separately. Russia says it is not targeting civilians.

Valery Zalushny, the head of Ukraine’s armed forces, called for the telegram to require more Western weapons, especially “weapons that allow the enemy to attack from greater distances.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov later warned that any arms supply that could reach the Russian border would be “a serious step towards unacceptable expansion.”

Increased risk

The US-led Western nations have supplied Ukraine with long-range weapons, including M777 howitzers and anti-horn anti-ship missiles from Denmark.

Washington is considering delivering a rocket system hundreds of kilometers away to Kiev, and U.S. and embassy officials have told Reuters that they have discussed with Kiev the increased risk of it hitting deeper into Russia. read more

“We are concerned about the increase, yet do not want to set geographical boundaries or tie their hands too much with the goods we give,” said an unnamed U.S. official.

Russia calls its operation in Ukraine a “special operation” to disarm and protect Ukraine from the fascists. Ukraine and the West claim that the fascist accusation is baseless and that the war was not an act of aggression.

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Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russia expects Ukraine to accept its demands in any peace talks. It wants Ukraine to recognize Russian sovereignty over Moscow’s Crimean peninsula, which was captured in 2014, and to recognize the independence of the territory claimed by the separatists. read more

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Reuters Bureau report; Written by Michael Perry; Editing Raju Gopalakrishnan, Robert Brussel

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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