Zelensky blasts international community over perceived lack of aid for broken dam response

Nova Kakhovka Dam
In this handout photo taken from a video released by Russian-controlled administration of Kherson Region on Wednesday, June 7, 2023, the central square of Nova Kakhovka is flooded after the Kakhovka dam was blown up, in the Russian-controlled part of the Kherson Region, Ukraine. (Russian-controlled administration of Kherson Region via AP)

Zelensky blasts international community over perceived lack of aid for broken dam response

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky blasted the international community for its supposed lack of aid in response to the collapse of the Nova Kakhovka dam.

In an interview with the German outlet Bild, Zelensky said he was “in shock” over international aid groups’ response to the catastrophe, or rather lack thereof. Specifically, he criticized the United Nations and Red Cross.

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“They’re not here!” Zelensky lamented. “They’re not there,” even though they are supposed to “be there first to save lives.”

He added that though the Ukrainian government has reached out, it hasn’t received a proper response from the appropriate aid organizations.

“We have not received an answer. I’m shocked,” the Ukrainian leader said. Any reaction that was received, he added, was “very diplomatic.”

Also, in the interview, Zelensky stood firm on the Ukrainian claim that Russia destroyed the dam. However, he ceded that Ukraine didn’t have evidence because it does not have access to the area where the dam collapsed, which is under Russian control.

Zelensky speculated the Nova Kakhovka dam was destroyed to delay the Ukrainian counteroffensive and that the Russians believe they will lose.

“They are afraid that we will start a counteroffensive in this direction, and they want to make the liberation of our territories more difficult,” Zelensky said. “They understand very well that they will lose this battle. They are prolonging the liberation of our territories.”

While the Ukrainian president lamented the destruction resulting from the dam’s collapse, he said its impact on the counteroffensive remains to be seen.

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“What is happening right now is a tragedy,” Zelensky said. “An environmental disaster and a human disaster. That doesn’t help us with the counteroffensive, it doesn’t make the counteroffensive any easier.” It is “difficult to say what impact that will have. I can’t go into detail about our counteroffensive.”

The Nova Kakhovka dam collapsed early on Tuesday. Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of destroying the dam intentionally.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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