Prime Minister Ruti stressed that the embattled Ukrainian president is already pleased with the European Union’s action against Russia and the support of his country. Although the European Union is not yet responding to his urgent appeal, among other things, to cut off Russia from international payments and personally punish President Putin. According to Root, the union will consider those punitive measures more in the coming period, as well as “Unprecedented punishment packagewhich was launched on Thursday.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed Rutte and other European Union leaders Thursday evening at a scheduled summit on Russia’s invasion of his country. Later that evening, he told his countrymen in a televised address that he was disappointed that Ukraine was on its own.
Rutte stated that Zelensky “has a lot of respect for what we all do”. The Ukrainian president knows that the EU countries will not help him by force of arms, but “we are helping him in every possible way.” Rutte said EU leaders had reaffirmed their awareness of Ukraine’s strong desire to join the union. “This is also appreciated.”
The prime minister said the president, who was recalled from Kiev from a “sort of dugout” in an army green shirt, made a “tremendous impression” on Rutte and his colleagues. “He is an impressive man. A man who shows leadership and stands by in the most difficult moments and keeps the peace.”
Rutte does not know whether Zelensky and the Ukrainians will notice the impact of the new sanctions. But it will certainly affect Russia, the oligarchy and people with economic interests at the top of the social ladder. The prime minister, who has been in Brussels for 12 years, says he has never faced such severe punitive measures before. We know from the recent past that sanctions packages will eventually have an effect.
Rutte says the sanctions, which largely match actions taken by other Western countries, also send a message. “A sign that the whole world is united” in resisting Russian “aggression.”
According to insiders, EU countries such as Italy and Germany were still reluctant to deny Russia access to the SWIFT payment system. According to Root, the negative consequences of such a move should first be investigated. Putin is evading personal sanctions so as not to impede a possible resumption of talks on a diplomatic solution.
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