President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has accused Russia of showing interest in triggering a war in the Middle East in order to “undermine world unity” and help “destroy freedom in Europe.”
Zelenskyy’s remarks come after Israel intensified airstrikes in the Gaza Strip and cut off water, food and power supplies, after attacks launched by Hamas militants on Saturday, October 7, 2023, left hundreds dead.
Zelenskyy disclosed that he held a meeting with the heads of Ukrainian intelligence, Main Intelligence Directorate and Foreign Intelligence Service, as well as with diplomats on the situation in and around Israel and on the overall situation in the Middle East.
Zelenskyy said that the situation was of “fundamental importance for us, not only for Ukraine but also for the entire Europe.”
“According to the available information – a very clear one – Russia is interested in triggering a war in the Middle East,” Zelenskyy averred.
He added, “So that a new source of pain and suffering could undermine world unity, increase discord and contradictions, and thus help Russia destroy freedom in Europe.”
“We see Russian propagandists gloating. We see Moscow’s Iranian friends openly supporting those who attacked Israel and all of this is a much greater threat than the world currently perceives. The world wars of the past started with local aggressions.”Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Also, the Ukrainian President revealed that appropriate steps are being prepared, adding that “We are defending the need for maximum unity in the world.”
“Every state in the world must now choose how it will defend international law. Defend! Not stand aside when terror tries to take over, and when another region of the world may collapse before our eyes.”Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Zelenskyy expressed gratitude to all the “leaders and states who are now fully aware of the danger and are ready to work together to keep the situation under control, to keep the obvious sponsors of terror from broader interference.”
Kira Rudik, a Ukrainian MP and the leader of the liberal Golos party, echoed Zelenskyy’s remarks.
She noted in a post on X that the Kremlin is “actively working to destabilise the Middle East”, with Moscow attempting to undermine “world unity.”
The ongoing clashes between Israeli military and Hamas militants entered its fourth day on Tuesday, October 10, 2023.
A number of foreigners have been reported killed, missing or taken hostage as a result of the war.
The French foreign ministry disclosed on Tuesday, October 10, 2023, that a total of four French nationals have died in the attacks.
The ministry stated that thirteen French nationals are still missing, and their situation was considered “very worrying.”
It added that some had probably been taken hostage.
Nearly 100,000 War Crimes Committed By Russian Forces
In other developments, the Head of the National Police of Ukraine, Ivan Vyhovsky revealed that the institution has documented nearly 100,000 war crimes committed by Russian forces in Ukraine.
Speaking to a news agency, Vyhovsky said that the evidence being gathered would form the basis of future attempts to prosecute the perpetrators.
“Materials on rocket attacks, crimes committed by the Russian military in deoccupied territories – violence, torture, rape. In the overwhelming majority [of cases] we document, investigate, and transfer to the SBU [Ukraine’s security services], because this is their jurisdiction.”Ivan Vyhovsky
Vyhovsky said his force had so far gathered evidence of 96,500 war crimes.
“The crimes committed by the Russian Federation, in particular the shelling of our critical infrastructure, are genocide of the Ukrainian nation,” he said.
“We are moving towards documenting all these facts in order to recognise the crimes of the Russian Federation as genocide in the international court,” he added.