Ukraine’s first lady attends Davos and pleads for international response to Russian aggression


Olena Zelenska (left) and EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen (Picture: AP)

Ukraine’s first lady has pleaded for international action to end Russian aggression as she described the horrors of the invasion during a speech in Davos.

Olena Zelenska said parents are in tears watching doctors trying to save their children and raised the spectre of a nuclear disaster by warning ‘we cannot allow a new Chernobyl to happen’.

In her rare address, she asked leaders who had gathered in the Swiss town for the World Economic Forum to support a ten-point peace plan by her husband, president Volodymyr Zelensky.

And she said problems overshadowing the summit, such as food shortages, soaring prices and a warming climate, would worsen if Russia is not restrained.

‘What will happen to the cost of living when tens of millions of people will be forced to flee mass starvation and become refugees? Unity is what brings peace,’ said Mrs Zelenska.

EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen promised ‘no let-up’ in support for Ukraine. She said financial aid would help to pay wages and pensions and keep hospitals and schools running. ‘We are in it for as long as it takes,’ she added.

Hundreds of government officials, corporate leaders and activists have assembled for the week-long forum in the alpine ski resort where Russia’s invasion has taken centre stage.

Swiss president Alain Berset said the world order was currently experiencing its greatest crisis as the war worsened global problems such as inflation.

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