Russia is ‘trying to destroy all life’ in Donbas cities, says Zelenskyy

Ukrainian president says Russia launched 1,474 missiles and 3,000 air strikes since the conflict began

In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 10, 2022. Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP
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Ukraine’s partners agree that its struggle against Russia is the protection of common values of all countries in the free world, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a post to accompany his nightly video address.

Mr Zelenskyy said he “was grateful to all those partners who help and provide the necessary weapons and ammunition to overcome the advantage of the Russian army”.

He said 1,474 missile strikes had been carried out by Russian forces since the start of the conflict.

“The invaders are waging a very cruel war against us,” Mr Zelenskyy said. “Indeed, there has not been such a war on the European continent for 77 years.

Ukraine's president says a meeting with Putin is the only way to end the war

Ukraine's president says a meeting with Putin is the only way to end the war

"Total war, where the enemy tries to destroy as many people and [as much] infrastructure as possible.

“In less than three months, there have already been more than 3,000 air strikes by Russian planes and helicopters."

On the night before the country marked three months since of the start of the war, Mr Zelenskyy said four missiles had killed 87 people in the town of Desna, 55 kilometres north of Kyiv.

The Russians have now concentrated their forces on Donbas cities and “are trying to destroy all life", he said.

“The coming weeks of the war will be difficult and we must be aware of that,” Mr Zelenskyy said. “But we have no alternative but to fight. Fight and win.”

He said he was continuing to increase pressure on Russia and the “absolute priority” for Ukraine remained in the supply of weapons and ammunition from partners.

Updated: May 24, 2022, 5:37 AM