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President Zelenskyy Says Ukraine 'Will Continue Fighting For What Is Ours' As He Addresses House Of Commons

President Zelenskyy Says Ukraine 'Will Continue Fighting For What Is Ours' As He Addresses House Of Commons

The Ukrainian president gave the unprecedented address after being granted permission from the Speaker of the House of Commons.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy has made clear Ukraine 'will not give up' as he commented on the ongoing conflict in Ukraine in an unprecedented virtual address to the UK's House of Commons.

The leader spoke in front of British MPs via video link today, March 8, almost two weeks since Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered troops across the border into Ukraine.

The address comes after Sir Lindsay Hoyle, the Speaker of the House of Commons, granted Zelenskyy's 'historic' request to speak in the chamber.

Zelenskyy used the opportunity to seek more support for Ukraine, where both troops and civilians have fought to defend their country and prevent Russia from taking control of major cities.

During his speech, the Ukrainian president described how the war continues to unfold day-by-day, saying constant shelling has taken place across the country but noting that it 'didn't break' citizens. He also said that more than 50 children have so far been killed in the conflict, saying: 'These are the children who could have lived. But these people have taken them away from us.'

He added: 'I would like to remind you of the words the United Kingdom have already heard which are important again. We will not give up, and we will not lose, we will fight until the end, in the sea and in the air, we will continue fighting for our land whatever the cost. We will fight in the forests, in the fields, on the shores, in the streets.'

Zelenskyy added Ukraine is 'looking for your help', and said the country is 'thankful for this help' and that he is 'grateful' to Boris Johnson, who he also urged to increase the pressure on Russia and recognise it as a 'terrorist state'.

Western leaders have imposed a number of sanctions against Russia to hinder the country and encourage an end to the fighting, though the Ukrainian president is urging leaders to go further.

He previously called for a global boycott of all Russian products, saying on Monday that 'we need a new sanctions package' if the invasion continues, including 'a boycott of Russian exports, in particular, the rejection of oil and oil products from Russia', The Independent reports.

The Ukrainian president has also encouraged NATO and the US to implement a no-fly zone over Russia, though Western leaders have expressed concerns that such a move would put Western forces at risk of being shot down by Russian planes, in turn starting a direct war between the US or NATO countries and Russia.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Alamy)
Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Alamy)

Formal parliamentary business was suspended as MPs watched Zelenskyy's address, with a translation being played over more than 500 headsets provided to members.

Commenting on the address, Sir Lindsay said: 'Every parliamentarian wants to hear directly from the president, who will be speaking to us live from Ukraine, so this is an important opportunity for the House. Thanks again to our incredible staff for working at pace to make this historic address possible.'

Zelenskyy has already addressed the issue of war in Ukraine with the European Parliament, receiving a standing ovation for the speech he made via video link last week.

The president and former actor has been widely praised for his response to the crisis in Ukraine, which has seen him reject an offer of evacuation and remain in the country despite reportedly being a target for assassination.

Prior to Zelenskyy's address, UK prime minister Johnson spoke with US president Joe Biden, French president Emmanuel Macron and German chancellor Olaf Scholz and agreed to maintain pressure on Russia to try and isolate Putin both diplomatically and economically.

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information 

Featured Image Credit: Sky News

Topics: UK News, Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, Russia, World News