Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on Thursday. His address mentioned Vladimir Putin’s decision to mobilise military reserves, but he did not discuss it deeply. Zelensky also mentioned the upcoming referendum votes in Ukrainian territories now controlled by Russia.

“They talk about the talks but announce military mobilisation. They talk about the talks but announce pseudo-referendums in the occupied territories of Ukraine”, Zelensky said, news agency Associated Press reported.

Zelensky slams countries that did not want him to speak

Zelensky was given special permission to deliver his address in a virtual format. This permission was granted after UN member members took a vote, which was opposed by seven countries. These included Belarus, Cuba, North Korea, Eritrea, Nicaragua, Russia and Syria.

“Seven. Seven who are afraid of the video address. Seven who respond to principles with a red button. Only seven”, Zelensky said.

“I want to thank the 101 countries that voted for my video address to take place. It was a vote not only about the format. It was the vote about principles”, he added.

Russia’s plan for winter

Zelensky asserted that Vladimir Putin wants to spend the winter preparing its forces in Ukraine for a new offensive. He also suggested that Moscow may start preparing for fortifications while mobilising more troops in the largest military conflict in Europe since World War II.

“Russia wants war. It’s true. But Russia will not be able to stop the course of history”, he told the UNGA.

Ukraine “needs time”

Zelensky clarified that Kyiv has been making steady progress against Russian forces but emphasised that it “needs time.” He said, “We can return the Ukrainian flag to our entire territory. We can do it with the force of arms.”

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been going on for nearly seven months. It was launched on February 24, 2022.