Zelensky made it clear that Ukraine will not negotiate with Russia as long as Vladimir Putin is in power.
Kyiv: After Russia annexed four Moscow-held regions of Ukraine, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the country is requesting a fast-racked NATO membership.
In a video posted on social media, Zelenskyy is heard saying, “We have already proven our compatibility with (NATO) alliance standards. We are taking a decisive step by signing Ukraine’s application for accelerated accession to NATO.”
Zelenskyy made it clear that Ukraine will not negotiate with Russia as long as Vladimir Putin is in power. He said, “Ukraine will not hold any negotiations with Russia as long as Putin is the president of the Russian Federation. We will negotiate with the new president.”
Zelenskyy’s remarks came after the Russian President signed treaties to annex four Moscow-occupied regions in Ukraine. The four regions are Donetsk, Kherson, Lugansk and Zaporizhzhia.
It is important to note that during the seven months of the war, Ukraine has shifted off Soviet-era weapon systems and has been using NATO-standard ordinance and weapons. The process is still continuing. Apart from Ukraine, Western countries and the United Nations secretary-general have denounced Russia’s move to annex the Ukrainian regions, which represents a major escalation in the war that began with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24.
Putin was also accused by NATO of provoking “the most serious escalation” of the war since it began but said he would not succeed in deterring the alliance from supporting Kyiv. NATO General Jens Stoltenberg said, “We have the combination of the mobilisation in Russia, combined with the reckless, dangerous nuclear rhetoric, and then today’s illegal annexation, or attempt to annex parts of Ukraine.”
He added, “Together this is the most serious escalation of the conflict since the start and the aim of President Putin is to deter us from supporting Ukraine. But he will not succeed in that.”