Moscow will not honor ‘Olympic truce’ — Zelenskyy

Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Russia cannot be trusted to abide by an “Olympic truce,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on April 21.

In an interview with French YouTube channel HugoDécrypte, Zelenskyy was commenting on French President Emmanuel Macron’s suggestion that a ceasefire could be agreed to pause fighting in Ukraine and Middle East for the duration of 2024 Paris Summer Olympics. The Ukrainian president noted that Russia has repeatedly violated ceasefire agreements in the past.

“I don't believe in this ceasefire format,” said Zelenskyy.

“I don't believe in any ceasefire format with Russia. It's a lie, Emmanuel [Macron] knows it, he himself is a witness to it.”

Read also: Paris mayor opposes Russian participation in Olympics

He suggested that a "truce" would only allow the Russian troops to regroup and build up strength to continue attacking Ukraine.

“We've been through this,” the president continued.

“When we signed agreements in the Normandy Format, we negotiated that there would be a ceasefire, that there would be no more shooting. But as soon as the doors were closed at the Élysée Palace, there were people on the front shooting at our troops.”

Zelenskyy described how groups of 20 to 30 Russian soldiers would "go hunting," sniping and killing Ukrainians despite the "truce."

"For [Russian dictator Vladimir] Putin, there is no such thing as a truce, no Olympics, no authorities," he noted.

Macron had previously expressed hope that a ceasefire could be achieved in Ukraine, the Gaza Strip, and Sudan during the Summer Olympic Games from July 26 to Aug. 11.

According to the International Olympic Committee, Russian and Belarusian athletes will be allowed to participate in the 2024 Summer Olympics as individual athletes under a neutral flag.

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