On Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky asked the Belgian government to help with “weapons, sanctions, membership of the European Union," adding, "maybe soon the future will pay you back.”
In an address to the Belgian parliament, Zelensky said “we need to know that Ukraine will be in the European Union because if we are they will lose. But if we lose, if we lose Mariupol and other Ukrainian cities there will no longer be a strong European Union because tyranny will come and take away from you that which you have and you are proud of. This is not a threat, this is reality.”
Zelensky went on to praise Belgium’s response to the war, saying the country was “one of the first to provide our defensive support. This is historic support and we are grateful. We will never forget that.”
“But you are in the heart of Europe and you can inspire all other Europeans to do more to help us get the occupiers off our land and restore precious peace. A peace that is worth more than anything,” Zelensky added.
Zelensky continued to say that peace in Ukraine is worth “more than any treaties with Russia. Any Russian vessels in the European ports. Any barrels of Russian oil.”
During the address, Zelensky also spoke of the situation in Mariupol, the city under heavy bombardment from Russian forces.
“More than 90% of all the buildings in the city have been completely destroyed by artillery, rocket attacks, and tanks from the Russian army,” he said. “Thousands are hiding in the basements of multi-story buildings or whatever is left of them.”
“There is nothing there. No water, no food, no medication, no life. There is none. Nothing that is required to maintain any kind of life,” Zelensky said. “But Mariupol is not giving up.”
“Every day we try to do all we can to make the humanitarian corridors from Mariupol work to save civilians who remain in the city. Women, children, elderly,” Zelensky said.
“Today, this is the worst place in Europe. It is hell. It is a catastrophe there,” he said.