Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Sunday evil has returned to Ukraine as he gave an emotional address for Victory Day, when Europe commemorates the formal surrender of Germany to the Allies in World War Two.
The life that soldiers fought for in that war came to an end on Feb. 24 when Russian forces invaded, he said in a video message.
“The evil has returned. Again!” Zelensky said. “In a different form, under different slogans, but for the same purpose.”
Moscow calls its actions since Feb. 24 a “special military operation” to disarm Ukraine and rid it what it calls “Nazis” and anti-Russian nationalism fomented by the West. Ukraine and the West say Russia launched an unprovoked war of aggression.
The invasion in Ukraine has killed thousands and displaced nearly 10 million people. It has left Russia in the grip of tough Western sanctions, and has raised fears of a wider confrontation between Russia and the West.
In Russia, Victory Day on May 9 is one of the country’s most important national events – a remembrance of the enormous sacrifices made by the Soviet Union in defeating Nazi Germany.