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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy late Friday warned that Russia likely plans to invade other countries if it succeeds in Ukraine, according to reports.
“The invasion of Ukraine is only the beginning. Then they want to invade other countries,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly address, according to Reuters. “All the nations that, like us, believe in the victory of life over death must fight with us. They must help us because we are the first in line. And who will come next?”
He added that neutrality was risky because a country could lose everything.
The president’s remarks came hours after a Russian general said it was Moscow’s goal to gain “full control over the Donbas and southern Ukraine.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv, Ukraine, on Tuesday.
(Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)
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Major General Rustam Minnekaev claimed that would give the Russian army access to Transnistria, a Russian-occupied region of Moldova.
A metal cross that used to be on the top of the dome stands outside of the damaged church in Lukashivka, in northern Ukraine, on Friday, April 22, 2022.
(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
“Control over the south of Ukraine is another way out to Transnistria, where there are cases of Russian-speaking people being oppressed,” Minnekaev said, in an apparent threat to Moldova.
Though a peace treaty between Transnistria and the Moldovan government was signed in 1992, the breakaway state has similarities to the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics in the Donbas which served as Putin’s justification for his illegal invasion in February.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken hosts a bilateral meeting with Moldovan Minister of Foreign Affairs Nicu Popescu at the State Department in Washington, Monday, April 18, 2022. (Stefani Reynolds/Pool via AP)
(Stefani Reynolds/Pool via AP)
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Moldova, which says it is neutral and has also applied to join the European Union, said it had expressed “deep concern” to Moscow over the general’s remarks about Transnistria, according to Reuters.
Fox News’ Caitlin McFall contributed to this report.