“This is a war crime,” Zelenskyy said of blocking a humanitarian aid corridor in besieged Mariupol.
Here are some of the key points from his speech:
Russia continues to block aid deliveries to besieged cities “in most areas”
Zelenskyy said there were seven humanitarian corridors in Ukraine on Friday. Six in the Sumy region, one in the Donetsk region. More than 9,000 people were evacuated from besieged Mariupol, he said, and hundreds of tons of basic products were delivered. But he added:
“The occupiers continue to block the delivery of humanitarian aid to besieged cities in most areas. This is a deliberate tactic. They have a clear order to do absolutely everything to make the humanitarian catastrophe in Ukrainian cities an ‘argument’ for Ukrainians to cooperate with the occupiers. This is a war crime. ”
There is no new information about the victims after the Russian air attack on the theater in Mariupol
Zelenskyy said that people are being rescued from the ruins and that more than 130 people have been rescued so far. “Some of them were seriously injured. But at the moment there is no information about the dead, “he said. Hundreds of civilians took refuge in the theater, an estimate of 1,300.
He thanked those who defend Mariupol, saying that the city is experiencing “the greatest temptation in its history, in the history of Ukraine.”
Russian forces stopped “almost in all directions”
Zelenskyy said Russian forces had been stopped in many parts of the country. He said that heavy fighting was taking place in the Kharkiv region, but that Russian troops were unprepared.
“Fair” negotiations were urgently needed
Zelenskyy told Moscow: “It is time to meet. It is time to talk. It is time to restore territorial integrity and justice for Ukraine. Otherwise, Russia’s losses will be so great that it will take you several generations to recover.”
He said: “Negotiations on peace, on security for us, for Ukraine – meaningful, fair and without delay – are the only chance for Russia to reduce the damage from its own mistakes.”
On the international response
Zelenskyy said that he would continue to appeal to world leaders to call for peace in Ukraine, and that he planned to address Switzerland, Italy, Israel and Japan in particular.