April 10, 2024

President Zelenskyy:  ‘We need warplanes and anti-aircraft to save our cities’

Russian Defense Ministry

Ukraine does not ask too much: we need air defense systems, fighter jets, artillery, justice – President at the Delphi Economic Forum

10 April 2024 

Thank you so much, Fred!

Madam President of Greece, Dear President of the Forum and all participants!

Thank you all for your attention to Ukraine. Now attention can and must become particularly efficient. In a special moment of this war.

Yesterday I was in Kharkiv, one of the largest cities in the east of our country. An industrial city. A city of students. Proud and strong city. More than a million people live there. 

But unfortunately, from this city to our border with Russia there are only forty kilometers. And such a short distance allows Putin to terrorize this city with glaring brutality.

Since the very first days of this war Kharkiv has been hit with Russian rockets. Almost one quarter of the city is burned. Just imagine – every night and every day there is a constant threat that a Russian rocket will reach the city in a few minutes and will hit one of its buildings – residential building or university, a school or an enterprise. 

Later, Russian terrorists began to use “Shaheds“ – Iranian drones that allowed them to intensify significantly cruelty against our people. 

Now Russia began hitting Kharkiv with aerial bombs. These are special guided bombs that destroy everything in the hundreds of meters around.

Putin is now betting a lot on these bombs. On the opportunity to reduce everything to the ruins and then advance to the empty place – a place which had a normal life before Russian war. 

It is the last – and last effective Putin’s bet in this war. His bet is on terror. He thinks that he will turn the situation to his favor with these bombs that ruin any buildings. He thinks that these bombs will be enough and that their trajectories will eventually destroy our energetics, throwing Ukraine into blackout. He thinks that his ability to produce and buy artillery from his accomplices will allow him to advance at the frontline while western friends of Ukraine delay the deliveries.

Putin has nothing but this terror. But Ukraine has shown that Russia has no jets and no rockets that Ukraine would not be able to shoot down.

We have shown that even without our own fleet in the Black sea we can win this sea battle and renew the normal traffic of the ships by lifting Russian blockade of our ports. 

We have proved that when we give no pauses to Russia, we can liberate our land.

Just a week ago Kharkiv was in fact in darkness because Russian terrorists destroyed all energy generating facilities in the city. 

A city with more than a million inhabitants without electricity, mobile connection, even without normal water supply. 

Now we managed to ensure the supply of energy, and the city is becoming bright and strong again.

We can defend normal life even forty kilometers from Russia but for that we need proper tools. 

And the world has them.

Paying attention to this fact now can change everything, exactly as needed. 

Ukraine does not ask too much. We need air defense systems and fighter aircraft that can protect our cities from Russian terror. Few dozen systems and a sufficient number of modern jets – and there will be no problem of Russian jets and bombs. We need artillery to move the frontline away and restore normal life in the territories occupied by Russia. And we need justice – such pressure on Russia that won’t allow Putin to increase his military potential – growing sanctions against Russia, confiscating Putin’s assets and zero toleration of Russian disinformation. 

It is all absolutely realistic. And it depends only on the political will of our partners. 

Putin can fill with his aggression only the deficit of world’s decisions. Deficit that takes too long. 

It is possible to win this war. But deficits do not advance victory.

I want to thank now everyone who understands that time during this war means life, it is a possibility to save many lives when you do not hesitate with decisions. I am grateful to everyone who really helps.

I am thankful to everyone who now visits Ukraine and who sees – what is at stake.

Madam President of Greece, Mr Prime Minister of Greece have been to Ukraine and have seen themselves what Russian terror brings and how our people overcome it. How Bucha is being restored, how Odesa lives despite Russian strikes, how every our community tries to keep the normality of life. 

We have to see all together our victory against Russian terror. Putin must lose his bet. 

Thank you for the invitation. Thank you again for your attention.

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