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'We will give you weapons': Zelensky asks foreign 'friends' to help protect Ukraine

The Ukrainian president has invited freedom loving people from all over the world to join the fight to protect his country against Russian invaders

February 26, 2022 11:51am

Updated: February 27, 2022 1:02pm

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky has promised to issue weapons to any “friends from abroad” who is willing to help the struggling country fight off Russian invaders, to prevent them from seizing the capital city of Kyiv. Zelensky’s invitation came Saturday, asking those who wanted to help Ukraine from abroad to come to the country and join the battle against Moscow “directly” and “in a united way.”

He also posted a defiant video of himself walking on the streets of Kyiv to disprove Russian disinformation rumors, proving he remained in the capital city ready to fight. False reports, most likely stemming from Russian disinformation campaigns, have falsely suggested Zelensky fled the country and planned to surrender.

“Every friend of Ukraine who wants to join Ukraine in defending the country please come over, we will give you weapons,” he said in a new address to the world, adding that his troops were continuing to slow the advance of Russian armored vehicles and tanks as they creep into the city.

He warned the world that Russia would try to “storm” Kyiv Saturday morning, and called upon the people to “stand firm” against the invaders. He refused an offer from U.S. officials to help evacuate him from the country, and instead vowed to remain and fight alongside his countrymen.

Zelensky’s call to arms comes amidst speculation that Russian forces may soon capture Kyiv, and in the wake of 50 explosions that rocked the city as its residents moved underground into the city’s metro stations for protection. Recently released pictures depict new scenes of heavy damage in the southwest outskirts of Kyiv, where two Russian missiles struck earlier.

Reports from the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defense indicate “the bulk of Russian forces” are about 19 miles from the capital’s city center, as Putin’s military “continue their advance” toward Kyiv, despite Russian President Vladimir Putin’s initial promise not to harm civilians.

To date, at least 137 and as many as 644 Ukrainians have been killed.

Ukraine’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dmytro Kubela accused the Russian Federation on Friday of “war crimes” and violating the international Rome Statute on Twitter after it shelled an orphanage and kindergarten in Volzel, an area just outside Kyiv.

“Today’s Russian attacks on a kindergarten and an orphanage are war crimes and violations of the Rome Statute. Together with the General Prosecutor’s Office we are collecting this and other facts, which we will immediately send to the Hague. Responsibility is inevitable.”

Zelensky and his troops are taking measures to try and slow the Russian invaders down by removing street signs to confuse them and instituting a curfew from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. to help identify Putin’s soldiers that may cross into the city perimeter.

Kyiv’s mayor admonished citizens that “all civilians on the street during the curfew will be considered members of the enemy’s sabotage and reconnaissance groups.” Meanwhile, Zelensky has continued to assemble his country’s volunteer army by drafting all able bodied males from the ages of 18 to 60, and barring them from leaving Ukraine.

Ukrainians reacted positively Zelensky’s to decree as many men and women joined together, taking to city armories to collect assault rifles while assembling Molotov cocktail petrol bombs, hurling them at advancing Russian armored columns. Ukrainian media revealed images of central Kyiv with a central highway lit aflame, the result of citizens waging war against the Russian invaders.

Despite western military projections that Russia would take the country virtually overnight and that Kyiv, Zelensky and his people have successfully thwarted the Russians with reports with as many as 2,800 Russian soldiers killed, with 80 tanks disabled and 516 armored vehicles destroyed as a result of the Ukrainian’s resistance. 

Ukraine’s Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council said the country’s army was in “control” of the capital city assuring the world, “We are stopping the horde using all means available… We know that they have not made the progress they have wanted to make, particularly in the north. They have been frustrated by what they have seen is a very determined resistance,” the official said. “It has slowed them down.”

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