Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy received a standing ovation before and after his address at the European parliament, ANI reported. He said, “We’re fighting for our land & our freedom despite the fact that all our cities are now blocked. Nobody is going to break us, we’re strong, we’re Ukrainians”. 

In his emotional speech, the Ukrainian head of state also said “We are fighting for our life … We are fighting for survival. This is the highest of our motivation”, CNN reported. He said, “We are fighting just for our land and our freedom. We desire to see our children alive. I think it’s a fair one”. As per CNN, Zelenskyy also added “But we are fighting also to be equal members of Europe. I believe that today we are showing everybody that’s exactly what we are”. 

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Earlier, Zelenskyy expressed the desire for Ukraine to join the European Union (EU). To that end, papers have been submitted to fast-track the process. Currently, Russia is continuing its assault on Ukraine after President Vladimir Putin sent in troops claiming to want to “demilitarize” and “denazify” the NATO-leaning neighbours. 

Putin has remained firm in his demand that Ukraine should not be allowed to join NATO and this stems from the fear of the military bloc’s troops at Russian borders. However, Putin’s actions have been met by wide condemnation from almost all countries in the world. Only a handful like China and India have refrained from picking any side. Even Switzerland, historically known for its neutrality, decided to take a stance against Russia’s actions.

While Russia and Ukraine did attempt diplomatic talks at the Ukraine-Belarus border, they did not bear any fruit. Currently, Russia continues its assault on key Ukrainian cities, Kyiv and Kharkiv. However, they have not fallen to Putin’s troops yet.

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Zelenskyy has stood his ground, and refused an earlier offer of evacuation from the Joe Biden-led US government. Instead, he iterated that he needed ammunition, not a ride. However, the Ukrainian president has constantly urged global powers to lend support and run interference with Moscow. The EU had always been supportive of Ukraine, long before Putin mounted the attack. Even while there was troop buildup at the Ukrainian border, and an invasion seemed a clear but avoidable situation, the EU had greenlit economic packages for Ukraine, so the situation would be sustainable if Russia attacked. Now that it has, several members of the European Union, who also happen to be NATO members, have sent arms and ammunition to Ukraine.