Russia has made ‘catastrophic mistakes’, says Ukraine's Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Ukrainian president says Russia's use of laser weapons systems shows lack of missiles

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv on Tuesday. Ukrainian Presidential Press Office / AP
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Wednesday said “catastrophic mistakes” had been made by Russia during its invasion of Ukraine.

In his nightly address from Kyiv, Mr Zelenskyy said the Russian army had started to use laser weapons systems because of a lack of missiles.

“Today, one of the representatives of the Russian state said that the occupiers allegedly began to use laser weapons systems in Ukraine. Allegedly to save missiles,” he said.

“First, the fact that they have to save on missiles and somehow explain it attracts attention.

"That is, more than 2,000 missiles fired by the Russian army in Ukraine were the main part of their stock of missiles. That is, further, only the remnants.

“This all clearly indicates the complete failure of the invasion. But again, this shows that they are afraid to admit that catastrophic mistakes have been made at the highest state and military levels in Russia."

Mr Zelenskyy said the Russian army fired missiles at Mykolaiv and at Dnipro on Wednesday.

He thanked the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, for providing an aid package of €9 billion ($9.4bn).

“This step is a testament to the true leadership that the European Union is capable of,” Mr Zelenskyy said.

He signed decrees on the extension of martial law and the term of general mobilisation, which are now expected to be approved by the Supreme Council of Ukraine.

Mr Zelenskyy also said he had spoken with the UAE President, Sheikh Mohamed, who was elected after the death of Sheikh Khalifa on Friday.

“I spoke with the new President of the United Arab Emirates. Congratulated him on his election," he said.

"I invited him to take part in the post-war reconstruction of the state. We discussed the threat to global food security that Russia has provoked with its invasion."

Updated: May 19, 2022, 3:54 AM