March 13 (UPI) — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called on the country’s allies to increase their support for Ukraine in a video address Sunday, calling Russia’s military invasion an “evil” presence.
“Because it is not only for Ukraine. This is for everyone in Europe. Evil that purposefully bombs peaceful cities, evil that fires even at ambulances and blows up hospitals, it will not be able to stop at one country if it has the strength to go further,” Zelensky said in the address, posted to Facebook around 3 a.m. Sunday morning.
Zelensky additionally said that more than 12,700 Ukranians were evacuated via established humanitarian corridors.
A cargo shipment of humanitarian supplies set for the southern city of Melitopol, he continued, is en route and expected to arrive later Sunday afternoon. Russian forces have occupied Melitopol for the last two weeks and reportedly kidnapped its mayor on Friday. They also bombed a Melitopol mosque on Saturday, Ukranian officials report.
In his statement, Zelensky said that the invading Russians lack “spirit” and are instead relying “only on weapons — which they have a lot.”
“I will not underestimate the threat, and I will not exaggerate the achievements. We are honest people, not Russia’s Ministry of Defense, which lies to everyone,” Zelensky said. “So I say frankly: We still need to hold on. We still have to fight. Every day and every night, we must look for ways to cause maximum damage to the enemy.”
His remarks came at the conclusion of the 16th day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Russia’s military forces have struggled to achieve a strategic military victory in two weeks, The New York Times reports, and attacks from drones and Ukrainian light infantry units were successfully ambushing Russian tanks and artillery outside of the capital city of Kyiv on Saturday.