Ukrainian soldiers look outside Svetlodarsk, Ukraine on February 21, 2022.
Wolfgang Schwan | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a televised address early Tuesday morning local time that his government would not respond to Russia’s provocation, but added, “We will not give anything to anyone.”
Zelensky said in the broadcast after Russian President Vladimir Putin orders troops to enter eastern Ukraine.
“This is our choice. We are on our land. We are not afraid of anyone and everyone,” he was quoted by NBC News as saying.
Russian President Russian President Vladimir Putin Monday evening announced that he would Recognition of the independence of two separate regions in eastern Ukraine. Putin issued a decree calling on the troops to enter Donetsk and Luhansk – it remains unclear what this mission entails.
US President Joe Biden has signed an Executive Order prohibiting investment, trade, and new financing by American persons into, from, or in the so-called regions of the Donetsk People’s Republic and Luhansk People’s Republic. European leaders called Putin’s declaration A flagrant violation of international law.
We do not owe anything to anyone, and we will not give anything to anyone,” said Zelensky.
The Ukrainian president called Moscow’s behavior a “violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity” and urged its allies to provide support.
“We need to know who our friends and partners are, and who continues to intimidate Russia with just words,” he said. We are committed to diplomatic means to resolve this issue. “
Zelensky said Ukraine is not the same country it was eight years ago Russia illegally annexed Crimea From Ukraine, which led to the outbreak of conflict in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions that continues to this day.
“It’s not February 2014. It’s February 2022,” he said.
“It’s a different country. A different army, [but] The same purpose is peace.”
According to NBC NewsIn addition to Ukraine’s standing army of over 200,000 soldiers, the country could also mobilize about 300,000 troops – and 130,000 of them would form new regional defense battalions.
More than half of Ukrainians would fight back if Russia invaded, NBC reported, according to a December survey by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology.
CNBC’s Amanda Macias contributed to this report.
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