Zelenskiy urges South Korea to provide arms to fight Russia

Zelenskiy Urges South Korea To Provide Arms To Fight Russia
South Korea Ukraine, © AP/Press Association Images
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By Associated Press

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has urged South Korea to provide his country with arms to help it fight Russia’s military.

President Zelensky made the request in a video address to the South Korean Parliament on Monday, hours after Seoul’s Defence Ministry confirmed it had rejected a Ukrainian request for anti-aircraft weapons during a call between the countries’ defence ministers last week.


The ministry cited the South Korean government’s principle of limiting its military help to Ukraine to non-lethal supplies.



“The Republic of Korea has tanks, ships and various equipment that can block Russian missiles and we would be grateful if the Republic of Korea could help us fight back against Russia,” Mr Zelensky said, using South Korea’s formal name.

“If Ukraine is able to receive such weapons, it will not only help us save the lives of our ordinary citizens but also provide Ukraine an opportunity to survive as a nation, and also help prevent other countries from being attacked by Russia,” he said.

Joining US-led international sanctions against Moscow, South Korea has already banned the export of strategic materials to Russia and ended transactions with key Russian banks and sovereign wealth funds.

Mr Zelensky thanked South Korea for those efforts but said sanctions alone have not been enough to stop the Russian aggression meaningfully.


“Russia doesn’t care how many people die,” he said.

Mr Zelensky highlighted Russia’s takeover of Mariupol, where he said at least tens of thousands of citizens were likely to have been killed.

He briefly stopped his speech to play a graphic video showing buildings hit by rockets, Russian tanks firing as they rolled through destroyed streets and people wailing over dead relatives at overwhelmed hospitals.

He said Ukrainian forces haven’t been able to enter Mariupol since the start of March and that Russian forces have cut off humanitarian shipments.


“This war is far from over,” Mr Zelensky said. “Russia is aiming to end Ukraine’s independence and separate the country. It is trying to eliminate the culture and language of the Ukrainian nation.”

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