Baltic leaders visit Ukraine

Visiting Kyiv, leaders of Poland and Baltic states condemn Russia

epa09880758 A handout photo made available by Ukrainian Presidential Press Service shows Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during a meeting with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Kyiv, Ukraine, 09 April 2022. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid an unannounced visit to Kyiv on April 9 to 'show solidarity' with Ukraine a day after a missile strike killed dozens at a railway station in the country's east. EPA-EFE/UKRAINIAN PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SERVICE / HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES

KYIV, April 13 (Reuters) - The presidents of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia met President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in Kyiv on Wednesday and called for increased military support for Ukraine and for Russia to be held accountable for the actions of its troops on the ground.

European politicians have flocked by train to the Ukrainian capital since Russian forces withdrew from the country’s North in the face of strong Ukrainian resistance earlier this month.

Before meeting Zelenskiy, the four presidents visited areas in Kyiv region where hundreds of slain civilians have been discovered after the Russian withdrawal. Moscow has denied responsibility and dismissed allegations its troops committed war crimes there as fake news.Read full story

“This is not war, this is terrorism,” Polish President Andrzej Duda said at a news conference in Kyiv, flanked by Zelenskiy and the Baltic states’ presidents.

“We’re not just talking about the soldiers who committed those crimes, but those who issued orders – all of them should be brought to justice,” he said.

Russia has denied that its forces targeted civilians and has said Ukrainian and Western allegations of war crimes are fabricated.

The wish for Russia to be held accountable was echoed by the other visiting presidents, who also said they planned to push the international community to ramp up military support for Ukraine as it readies for an intensified offensive by Russia in the East.

“It is our duty to help Ukraine with all kinds of weapons,” said Latvian President Egils Levits.

His Lithuanian counterpart Gitanas Nauseda said, “The future of Ukraine will be decided on the battlefield … Ukraine must win.”

The four presidents’ visit came a day after U.S. President Joe Biden said Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine amounted to genocide, while Russian President Vladimir Putin promised Moscow would “rhythmically and calmly” continue its operation and achieve its goals. Read full story

Putin sent his troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24 on what he calls a “special military operation” to demilitarise and “denazify” the country. Ukraine and its allies say Putin launched an unprovoked war of aggression.

“President Putin must lose this war or there will be no peace in Europe,” said Estonian President Alar Karis.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has expressed “irritation” after the country’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier cancelled a visit to Kyiv at the same time. He had said it was intended “to send a strong signal of European solidarity with Ukraine”. Scholz said Kyiv did not want Steinmeier to visit. Read full storyRead full story

But at Wednesday’s news conference, Zelenskiy said he had not been officially approached by Steinmeier or his office regarding a visit. Read full story

Speaking about his visitors in Kyiv, Zelenskiy said he was grateful they had stood “shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine.”

“Those four leaders of the four nations are always protecting us, always standing up for us,” he said.


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Marco Savio Savio says:

    There is not enough pressurised media coverage on the role of the United Nations and the global voice of its members. The Ukraine devastation brings back memories of Bosnia and the atrocities that were knowingly being committed with very little international intervention and involvement and a relatively ‘silent’ UN while people were being murdered. Rwanda was another example of people left to their ‘own solutions’. It appears the cost to keep the Unitied Nations running could be better spent elsewhere since they appear ineffective. This is also the time for the EU to visibly stand together as one for the safety of a united Europe and weather some inconvenience by agreeing on how they can be independant of Russian services (gas) and end this war quickly before it becomes Bosnia all over again. Stop the flow of Russian funds at whatever cost.

  • Beyond Fedup says:

    Well done to all those Presidents and Prime Ministers who visit Ukraine and show strong and unwavering support and solidarity with Zelensky and his country. It is time to stand up, once and for all, to this barbaric, criminal and evil Putin tyrant and mass murderer, who thinks he can do as he pleases and is above the law – all in the name of satisfying his twisted, false and warped ego and outlook of Russia’s place in the world. One has to stand up to this hideous bully – like all bullies, he respects strength and nothing else. If there is a chance that they will come off 2nd best, the cowards back away. Putin is no different! He has got away with mass murder, poisoning, violence, rape and shenanigans for far too long. The world is tired of his threats to unleash hell – he would do well to be reminded that we in the West, can also unleash hell on him and his country. He is not the only one with nuclear weapons etc. – it is not a one way street!

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