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Zelensky explained why he did not evacuate Kyiv residents after the first strikes on the energy system

Wednesday, 16 November 2022, 18:48

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy believes that Ukraine might have lost its statehood if he had warned that there would be a war and encouraged citizens to evacuate.

Source: Zelenskyy during a conversation with journalists on air during the 24/7 national joint newscast on 16 November

Details: As Zelenskyy said, this would create a great risk that Russia would try to occupy northern Ukraine or other territories one more time.


Quote: "When the first missile attack came on Kyiv, there was a proposal to evacuate the capital [of Ukraine – ed.], the entire population, close all the infrastructure facilities, all shops, turn off the electricity, etc. This proposal was made based on what could happen: there would be no electricity, sewage treatment plants would not work, so there would be no drinking water and many other things.

It was the first day of powerful missile strikes. My question was, where would we evacuate it [the capital - ed.] if missiles were launched across the country? To Poland, Slovakia, or Romania? Tell me, after a complete evacuation, could you give me at least a one per cent guarantee that Russia will not come back, enter and completely occupy our territory?

If there are no people in the city, then missiles will fall everywhere, and every city will face the kind of situation we had in Mariupol; there will be deaths everywhere. And that's your choice."

More details: Zelenskyy cannot know what will happen tomorrow, but if everyone were evacuated, the question arises who will defend the state.

"Who should defend [the country - ed.]? Do you think that only people with weapons should defend it? Do you think that they do not have wives and children? They have parents and families, they are just like you. And what are they motivated by - salary? No. Perhaps someone is, but primarily, it is Ukraine [that is their motivation – ed.]. And what is Ukraine? Land and families. What if all their families left? What are they defending?..." Zelenskyy argued.

He mentioned the cities in the east of Ukraine that have been completely destroyed.

Quote: "If there were no people left in Ukraine, we would have lost our state. This is my personal opinion... I don't know if I'm right. I stayed, and the people did as well... If I knew exactly what they were going to do, I would have said all this. But I don't know what would happen if the president of the country said: "Run, run, and I'll run with you."

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