Live updates on the Russian-Ukrainian crisis: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says Russia will attack on February 16
President Volodymyr Zelensky, in an address to the people of Ukraine, which was later posted on Facebook, said he had information that Russia would attack his country on February 16. The comments come as tensions rise between the two neighbors. Russia has deployed more than 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border, which has raised serious concerns in the Western world over Russian plans to invade Ukraine. However, the Kremlin has always denied planning a military incursion. Senior officials from Ukraine, Russia and NATO countries have engaged in diplomatic talks to ease tensions, but nothing has moved forward.
The message said:
Great people from a great country! There have been serious external and internal challenges before our country, which demand responsibility, confidence and concrete actions from me and from each of us.
We are intimidated by a great war and set the date for the military invasion again. It is not the first time. But our state is stronger today than ever.
We long for peace and want to solve all problems exclusively through negotiation. And Donbass and Crimea will return to Ukraine. Only diplomatically. We do not look at those of others, but we will not give ours. We have an incredible army. Our boys have unique combat experience and modern weapons. It’s already times stronger than the army eight years ago. We have confidence in our armed forces, and our military too should feel our support, our solidarity and our unity. The basis of our army is the trust of our own people and a strong economy.
We are told that February 16 will be the day of the attack. We will make it a union day. The decree has already been signed. This afternoon we will hang national flags, put on blue-yellow ribbons and show the world our unity.
We have a great European aspiration. We want freedom and are ready to vote for it. 14,000 defenders and civilians who died in this war are watching us from the sky. And we will not betray their memory.
We all want to live happily, and happiness loves the strong. We’ve never been able to give up and we’re not going to learn that.
Love Ukraine! We are at peace! We are strong! We are together!”