The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Tuesday that Russia is “weaponizing” everything from food and energy to abducted children in its war against Ukraine — and he warned world leaders that the same could happen to them.
‘When hatred is weaponized against one nation, it never stops there,’ he said at the U.N. General Assembly’s annual top-level meeting. ‘The goal of the present war against Ukraine is to turn our land, our people, our lives, our resources into weapons against you — against the international rules-based order.’
The pandemic’s significant supply interruptions have been made worse by the war in Ukraine, which has jolted the world economy, increased hardship in many developing nations, and caused a sharp rise in food and energy prices.
Due to sanctions, trade disputes, pipeline closures, and a significant effort by Western countries to locate alternate supplies, decades-old energy supply channels to Europe from Russia, a key supplier of oil and gas, were stopped or seriously damaged by the war. Both Russia and Ukraine are significant grain exporters, and this past summer, Russia withdrew from an agreement that permitted the transportation of Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea.
Zelenskyy pointed to the food and fuel crunches, and he highlighted what Ukraine says were kidnappings of at least tens of thousands of children taken from Ukraine after Moscow’s invasion: ‘What will happen to them?’
‘Those children in Russia are taught to hate Ukraine, and all ties with their families are broken. And this is clearly a genocide,’ Zelenskyy said in remarks that ran 15 minutes — the meeting’s often-disregarded time limit.
The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant in March for Russian President Vladimir Putin and another official, accusing them of abducting children from Ukraine. Russian officials have denied any forced transfers of children, saying some Ukrainian youngsters are in foster care.