Seemingly emulating former Afghanistan president Ashraf Ghani, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy posted a self-shot video from central Kyiv to quell the rumors that he is fleeing Ukraine amid Russian aggression.
“We’re all here. Our military is here. Citizens in society are here. We’re all here defending our independence, our country, and it will stay this way,” Zelensky said, standing with his prime minister, chief of staff, and other senior aides outside the presidency building.
Zelenskiy said he discussed strengthening sanctions, concrete defence assistance, and an anti-war coalition with President Joe Biden. While the resolution was vetoed by Moscow, America announced sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin and several key aides as his troops pushed towards Kyiv.
“President Putin and Minister Lavrov are directly responsible for Russia’s unprovoked and unlawful further invasion of Ukraine,” the US treasury department said in a statement.
“President Putin joins a very small group that includes despots such as Kim Jong Un, Alexander Lukashenko, and Bashar al-Assad,” the department said referring to the leaders of North Korea, Syria, and Belarus.
With growing signs that Russia aims to overthrow him, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Sen. Tim Kaine says the United States and its Western allies will not “recognize a puppet government installed by a Russian invasion in Ukraine.”
The European Union also decided to freeze the assets of Putin and Lavrov and agreed on a further package of individual and economic restrictive measures covering finance, energy, transport, technology, and visa policy.
“This decision swiftly implements the European Council conclusions of 24 February and shows the unity and resolve of the European Union, together with international partners and allies, to defend the peace order and the international law,” the EU Council said.