Zelenskiy asks G7 for air defences, support for Belarus border mission

Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukrainian president, asked leaders of the Group of Seven nations (G7) for more anti-Russian air defense capabilities and to support his initiative to establish an international observer mission at the Belarusian border.

Zelenskiy joined the virtual meeting of the G7 leaders a day after missiles were dropped on Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kyiv. He called for tougher sanctions against Moscow and ruled out any talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Zelenskiy stated that “when Ukraine receives a sufficient number of modern and efficient air defense systems, the key element in Russia’s terror, missile strikes, will cease working.” He thanked Olaf Scholz, German Chancellor, for expediting the delivery of the IRIS T air defense system, and Joe Biden, U.S. President, for delivering air defence systems.

“We hope, Monsieur President, that these systems will have a medium-to-long range of effectiveness, which should allow for the creation of a layered defense system.”

Since February’s Russian invasion, Ukraine’s Western allies have sent heavy weapons and aid to Kyiv. Zelenskiy’s government mixed gratitude with requests for faster delivery and more powerful weapons.

This week, Belarus declared that its troops would be deployed alongside Russian forces near Ukraine. This signaled a possible further escalation in the war. Belarus, a close Russian ally has served as a staging area for the invasion so far.

Zelenskiy stated that Ukraine does not intend to attack Belarus but wanted to ensure there is no threat to its northern neighbor.


“A mission of international observers can be placed at the border of Ukraine/Belarus to monitor security conditions. Our diplomats can work out the format. He said, “I ask you, at the level of G7, to support the initiative.”

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