WAR: Zelensky predicts ‘third World War’

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Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has warned of a “third World War”, if talks with Vladimir Putin fail to achieve peace, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“If these attempts fail, that would mean … a third World War,” Zelensky told CNN via video link yesterday.

The country’s leader also repeated his belief that Russian forces were working to “exterminate” Ukraine’s civilian population.

“Unfortunately, our dignity is not going to preserve lives. So, I think that we have to use any format…(to reach) the possibility of talking to Putin,” Zelensky told CNN anchor Fareed Zakaria.

The Ukrainian leader spoke as the one-month anniversary of Russia’s invasion looms this week.

Ukraine has resisted the attacks across several fronts and has dealt thousands of casualties to Russia’s armed forces in a matter of weeks, according to U.S. intelligence agencies.

The scale is comparable to the U.S. losses in Iraq and Afghanistan over more than a decade.

The losses among Ukraine’s civilian population are devastating as well. By United Nations reporting, more than 800 have died since the combat began.

However, Zelensky said the brutal war was taking a heavy toll on Ukraine’s civilian population. Millions of Ukrainians have fled their homeland in recent weeks.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also yesterday urged China to join Western nations in condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“As time goes on, and as the number of Russian atrocities mounts up, I think it becomes steadily more difficult and politically embarrassing for people either actively or passively to condone Putin’s invasion,” he told the yesterday Times.

There were now “considerable dilemmas” for countries who were yet to speak out against Russian President Vladimir Putin, he said, adding: “I think that in Beijing you are starting to see some second thoughts.”

Ukraine on Saturday called on China to condemn “Russian barbarism” after dozens were killed in new strikes.

Ukraine and the United States are concerned about Chinese potentially sending military aid to Russia or helping Moscow circumvent Western sanctions.

U.S. President Joe Biden has warned Chinese leader Xi Jinping of “consequences” if he backs Russia, but Beijing has so far showed no sign of criticising the invasion.

Johnson called the crisis a “turning point for the world” during a speech at his Conservative Party conference attended by the Ukrainian ambassador to London, Vadym Prystaiko.