Ukrainian first lady says new Russian troop mobilization a ‘bad sign’ for world

Olena Zelenska
Greg Nash
First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska addresses members of Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, July 20, 2022.

Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska has said Russian President Vladimir Putin’s move to mobilize troops amid the ongoing conflict is a “bad sign” for the world. 

“We can’t say that we get used to this war, but we are getting used to the illogical actions of the Russian Federation,” Zelenska, the wife of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, told ABC News’s Amy Robach in an interview aired Monday.  

“When the whole world wants this war to be over, they continue to recruit soldiers for their army. Of course, we are concerned about this. We are worried. And this is a bad sign for the whole world.” 

Putin recently issued a partial mobilization order to call up hundreds of thousands of Russians reservists, a move many Russians are protesting.

Some Russians have fled the country to avoid summons, even as their leader seems intent on prolonging the conflict, now more than half a year on.  

Putin’s mobilization move and recent threats about the potential use of nuclear weapons indicate the Russian president is scrambling to react to Ukraine’s recently intensified counteroffensive that pressed Russian forces into retreat from some occupied areas.  

Zelenska in the interview also commented on a United Nations report released last week that found evidence Russia had committed war crimes during its assault on the country, including the rape and torture of Ukrainian children. 

“On the one hand, it’s horrible news. But it’s the news that we knew about already. On the other hand, it’s great news that the whole world can finally see that this is a heinous crime. This war is against humanity and humankind,” Zelenska said.  

The first lady thanked Americans for aiding Ukraine’s defense and called for continued support.

“I’m sure that it’s not war between Ukraine and Russia. It’s war for values of the world. A war for freedom, for human rights, for all that we love. All the people of the world, we love our children, we love our homes, we love our homelands. And that’s exactly what Ukrainians are fighting for now,” Zelenska said.

Tags mobilization Olena Zelenska Olena Zelenska russia Russia Russia-Ukraine war Russian invasion ukraine Ukraine Ukraine war Vladimir Putin Vladimir Putin Volodymyr Zelensky Volodymyr Zelensky War

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