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Zelensky: I am not calling for pre-emptive strikes on Russia

Published October 08,2022

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has toned down his controversial statements on a "preventive strike" against Russia in a television interview.

"You must use preventive kicks," he told the British broadcaster BBC, apparently referring to sanctions, "not attacks."

Zelensky had caused a stir on Thursday with apparent calls for preemptive strikes against Russia, remarks that were later rowed back by officials.

In the BBC interview, Zelensky referred to a possible Russian use of nuclear weapons: "They are not ready to do it, to use it. But they begin to communicate. They don't know whether they'll use or not use it. I think it's dangerous to even speak about it."

"We are not terrorists, we don't fight on another territory," Zelensky said. "Even after eight years blood tragedy" since the conflict in Crimea Ukrainians were not ready to "kill people like Russians do it."