The statement made by Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the President of Ukraine, on 15 March 2022.
Strong people of our indomitable country!
Eight years of war against us. The 20th day of full-scale invasion. Attempts to destroy us all, to destroy Ukraine. We are fighting for our lives. We are fighting for our lives against missiles, bombs, artillery, tanks, mortars and everything else that Russian troops are using to destroy us. Everything else that Russia is destroying itself with now.
Because every shot at Ukraine, every blow at Ukraine are steps towards Russia’s self-destruction. Steps to self-isolation, poverty and degradation.
Everyone who just wants to live and has something to think with is leaving Russia. Scientists, artists, businessmen, IT specialists, etc. The Russian state has not experienced such a blow at human capital for decades. A blow, which it inflicted on itself. We do not care. This is not our problem.
Our problem is to save our people. The strength of our society. Its scientists, its artists, its businessmen, its people, its strong people. All our Ukrainians who defend the state and bring closer the peace that every Ukrainian needs.
Last night there were air alarms almost all over our country. The airport in Dnipro was destroyed by a missile strike. Kharkiv. Russian bombs hit residential areas. Artillery. Mortars. Fighting continues in the region – Izyum, Chuhuiv.
Disassembly of wreckage in Rivne after the missile strike on the TV tower is ongoing. As of now, 19 casualties are confirmed.
Ancient Chernihiv and Oster are under such a brutal attack by Russia that it has wiped out any claims to its cultural ties to the times of Rus’. The invaders have no roots, no memory and no soul.
Russian troops attacked Kyiv, attacked Kyiv residents. Four apartment buildings were destroyed. Disassembly of the debris is still ongoing. As of now, five casualties are confirmed.
I will tell you in Russian: this happened in our capital. In the city that you always called “the mother of Russian cities”. That made our nations historical. And that you bombed today. Just people, residential areas. Bombed and bombed again. We don’t need such children. No, thanks.
The invaders continue to consider the capture of our capital as their key goal, their political goal. They hope that control over Kyiv will give them control over Ukraine. This is absolute absurdity from all points of view.
To further strengthen the defense of the capital and the Kyiv region, I appointed Hero of Ukraine, Lieutenant General and Commander of the Joint Forces Operation Oleksandr Pavliuk head of the regional military administration.
Dismissed head of the regional administration Oleksiy Kuleba will help the military leadership.
Therefore, the Kyiv direction and the situation in the region will get even more attention.
Major General Eduard Moskaliov became the new commander of the Joint Forces. Professional man, patriotic man. The decree is signed.
Every morning, every evening, I thank the military. I thank all our heroes who bravely defend our state. All who stop the enemy despite the fact that the invaders are many times more. Dozens of times.
And now, today, I want to speak about all peaceful Ukrainians who were taken away by this war.
Eternal memory to everyone who died for Ukraine! Eternal curse to the enemy who took thousands of lives.
Humanitarian corridors have been partially opened today. There is a corridor from Sumy, Trostyanets, Lebedyn, Shostka and Konotop in the direction of Poltava.
The invaders did not stop the shelling and disrupted humanitarian corridors in the Kyiv region.
The convoy with humanitarian cargo for Mariupol also remains blocked. For several days in a row. But still little by little people are leaving the besieged city by private transport.
I want to thank SES officers, police, doctors and everyone else who saves people for this important work. And of course, I am thankful to our military.
Today I spoke at the summit organized by Great Britain, a friend of Ukraine – Boris Johnson. I addressed the United Kingdom Joint Expeditionary Force. Spoke to the leaders of the Baltic states and the countries of northern Europe.
I said what, of course, all our citizens would like to say.
About NATO. About help. About sincerity and… the fact that not everyone took a moral stance in response to the Russian war.
Each of more than 800 Russian missiles that have hit our country is an answer to a long-standing question about NATO. Whether the doors of the Alliance are really open for Ukraine.
If they were open, if it was fair, we would not have to convince the Alliance for 20 days that the sky over Ukraine should be closed. Closed to the death brought by the Russian Air Force. But… They don’t hear or don’t want to hear us yet. Some Allies have intimidated themselves. Saying that they allegedly can’t answer. They cannot collide with Russian missiles and planes in the sky of Ukraine. Because this, they say, will lead to escalation, will lead to World War III…
And what will they say if Russia goes further into Europe, attacking other countries?
I’m sure it’s the same thing they say to Ukraine. Article 5 of the NATO treaty has never been as weak as it is now. This is just our opinion.
When some members of the Alliance are afraid to be truly an alliance capable of protecting everything for which it was created. Freedom and democracy. Humanity and justice. We need to look for effective guarantees. Guarantees for us, for our sky. And we will not give up. We need planes. And I will continue to talk about it, I will continue to pursue it.
We need long-term security guarantees for the state. For all Ukrainians.
Concrete things. Concrete guarantees. Legally enshrined. So that there is no doubt in them. And so that no excuses sound. As they sound now, when we turn to those who signed “Budapest” and who… had the power to stop the Russian invasion even before it began. Using preventive measures. By helping Ukraine, which is convincing. Using sanctions that do not allow war.
There are more than 40 million of us in our state. And millions more around the world. This is a great force. Plus our friends. Plus many of our partner countries. We all now have a common task, a national task. We must put pressure on Russia so that the price for this war against Ukraine becomes extremely painful. So that everyone in the world takes a moral stance. Not only states, but also companies. I’m talking about business.
Large corporations that still sponsor Russia’s military machine and have not left the Russian market, although they should have done so immediately. As soon as the world saw what Russian troops were doing on our Ukrainian land.
You know these brands. They are well known. And there are no secrets here.
Nestle, Mondelēz and other giants of the food industry. As well as Raiffeisen, Societe Generale and other banks. BASF, Samsung and LG. Bayer, Sanofi and other pharma companies.
Unilever, Johnson & Johnson… And dozens of other companies. And that’s billions of dollars.
We turn to the world. To states and to people. But this is not just the work of politicians.
I appeal to Ukrainians. To everyone and in any country. Where you can influence it. Everything is in your power. All business with Russia must be stopped. All trade operations.
So that they can’t sponsor the killings. Killings of us and our children. So that dollars and euros are not paid for blood. Please contact politicians. Put pressure. Talk to reporters. Boycott their products.
They must feel our strength! They must feel your strength!
Because we have the strength.
Glory to Ukraine!