Zelensky calls on EU leaders to ‘stand side by side with Ukraine’ to stop Russia

KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky calls on the leaders of the European Union, who held an emergency summit on Thursday, to “stand side by side with Ukraine and stop the aggressor.”

In a statement published on his page in the messaging app Telegram, Ukraine’s leader calls for “powerful economic and financial sanctions” on Russia, including cutting off SWIFT and imposing an embargo on oil and gas trade.

“Europe’s fate is being decided in Ukraine: if (Russian President Vladimir) Putin doesn’t get a decent rebuff now, he will move on further,” Zelenskyy said, adding that the EU could also help Ukraine with weapons and ammunition and support a UN peacekeeping operation.

“Our people are dying for the freedom of Ukraine and Europe,” the statement says. “We have waited for a long time at an open door. We asked about NATO membership and didn’t get a response.”

Now Ukraine needs international security guarantees, “a clear European perspective, and swift and concrete action,” Zelenskyy concluded.

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