Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky requested US counterpart Joe Biden to designate Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism, the Washington Post reported. The US President didn’t offer a firm confirmation of this request, however. 

Citing a source, the media organization noted that Zelensky didn’t show the same amount of urgency with which he demanded military and economic aid from the West, but definitely pushed the matter to escalate Russia’s condemnation in the global community. 

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Currently, the US list includes Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Cuba, with officials ruling out adding Russia, in a previous instance. White House Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, spoke to reporters about the matter, saying, “I don’t have any assessment of that at this point in time. Obviously, we’re continuing to look at the actions on the ground and the actions of leaders” 

If Russia were added to this list, it would dramatically heighten the severity of sanctions and impact other countries still in business with Moscow.

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Russia already stands accused of war crimes in Ukraine, since troops entered on February 24. Moscow has switched tactics to shelling, often targeting civilians, and after troops retreated from the Kyiv and Chernihiv regions, the discovery of mass civilian graves in Bucha led to a global outcry. 

Zelensky’s current urgings come at a time when the nation is bracing for an attack from the Donbas region in the east. Previously, the Ukrainian president sought sanctions on Russia effective enough to stop the war. 

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While Russia has withstood the weight of global sanctions, the economy has been severely impacted. However, the nation has managed to continue trade relationships with countries like China and India, the latter finding it hard to turn down oil at reduced prices. 

If global condemnation and its consequences could heighten, Russian President Vladimir Putin may consider an end to the conflict that has created a refugee crisis in Europe.