Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has predicted the overthrow of the Russian leadership after a defeat of Russia that he predicted. "Kiev and all our cities, all of our Ukraine will put an end to the history of Moscow despotism, which has enslaved many different peoples for a very long time," he said in his daily video address on Sunday.
The head of state was not seen in a shielded room as usual, but in the evening light on the street in front of the presidential office in Kiev. The outdoor appearance on the day of the city's birthday of Kiev may also have been a sign to Moscow that the Ukrainians do not want to be frightened.
Massive night-time drone strikes
The anti-aircraft defense managed to almost completely repel one of the largest drone attacks since the beginning of the war, Zelensky said. According to him, Russia tried to spoil the city's birthday for the people of Kiev. But Kiev has already survived various atrocities in its history and will also survive the attacks of the Russians and will not allow them to conquer them, said the 45-year-old head of state. According to him, weapons such as the Shahed drones cannot save Russia's rulers. Because Russia despises life and culture, it can only lose the war, he predicted.
On Monday night, Kyiv was attacked with drones and missiles for the second time in a row. Air defenses discovered and destroyed more than 40 targets in the air, the city's civil and military administration said on Telegram. According to the report, TU-95MS strategic bombers fired cruise missiles. In addition, Kyiv had been attacked with explosive drones, Mayor Vitali Klitschko said on Telegram that there were "neither dead nor injured".
The night before, Russia had launched one of the heaviest drone strikes in months. In total, a record number of 54 kamikaze drones were registered, the press service of the Ukrainian Air Force said. Although, according to the authorities, 52 of the unmanned aerial vehicles were shot down, there was one dead and one injured. The attack was mainly aimed at Kyiv, but several residential buildings in the city of Zhytomyr were also hit.
Sanctions against Iran planned
Against the backdrop of the ongoing drone attacks, Zelensky launched sanctions against Iran with a duration of 50 years. This was reported by the state news agency Unian on Sunday, referring to a legislative initiative by the president received by the Ukrainian parliament. For example, trade in military equipment and so-called dual-use goods that can be used for civilian and military purposes is to be banned.
In addition, Ukraine also wants to end its economic and financial obligations to Iran and prevent the export of capital to the Islamic Republic. A ban on technology transfer and investment in Iran is also proposed. The Ukrainian parliament is expected to approve the decision, which has already been approved by the National Security Council.
Ukraine accuses Iran of providing weapons aid to Russia. For its attacks, Moscow mainly uses drones of the Iranian type Shahed, it is said. Iran denies this.
Congratulations to Ankara
Meanwhile, both Zelensky and Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin have congratulated Turkish President Tayyip Recep Erdogan on his re-election. Putin did this even before the end of the counting of votes. "The election victory was the legitimate result of your selfless work in the post of head of state of the Turkish Republic," reads the Kremlin's congratulatory telegram published on Sunday. The election victory also demonstrates the Turkish people's support for the course of "national sovereignty and independent foreign policy". Putin thanked Erdogan for building good relations between the two countries. According to him, Russia is ready to continue cooperation on both bilateral and international issues.
For Russia, Turkey is an important partner in the face of Western sanctions. In Moscow, it had been feared that Turkey would orient itself more towards the West after an election victory of the opposition, thus strengthening Russia's international isolation.
However, Turkey maintains good relations not only with Russia, but also with Ukraine in the war. With the mediation of Ankara and the United Nations, Moscow and Kiev concluded the grain deal last summer, which ended the Russian blockade of Ukrainian seaports. Most recently, Russia extended the agreement for two months in mid-May.