Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the leaders of France, Germany, Italy and Romania for their Thursday visit to Kyiv — the first trip to the capital by some of Europe’s most influential politicians since the Russian invasion. It was important that Western leaders “agree that the end of the war and peace for Ukraine must be exactly as Ukraine sees,” Zelensky said.
The leaders also offered coveted backing for Ukraine’s candidacy to join the European Union. France pledged six additional howitzers — key to the artillery battle against Russia in the east — while Romania offered to facilitate the transport of Ukrainian goods such as grain through its territory.
Conditions across the country remain bleak. Communication with the roughly 500 people trapped inside a chemical plant in the eastern city of Severodonetsk was unstable due to relentless Russian bombardment, a local official said. At least four people were killed by airstrikes on Lysychansk, a neighboring city that is likely to be Moscow’s next target, according to the regional governor.
Amid the devastation, however, Britain’s top uniformed officer told reporters Kyiv’s forces had inflicted so much damage on the invader that Russia would “never take control of Ukraine.”