Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky drew a standing ovation and left an English interpreter fighting back emotion as he spoke about Ukrainian freedom before the European Parliament on Tuesday.
Condemning Russian strikes on Freedom Square in Kharkiv, a major landmark in Ukraine where missiles reportedly struck a government building, opera house, and concert hall, Zelensky declared that every square in Ukraine would soon be called “Freedom Square,” according to a translator.
”We are fighting just for our land and for our freedom,” Zelensky said as an interpreter struggled to hold back emotion. “Every square after today, no matter what it’s called, it’s going to be called ... Freedom Square, in every city of our country.”
Russian shelling struck civilian areas of Kharkiv on Monday, killing at least 11 people and injuring many more.
Zelensky added, according to the interpreter: “Nobody’s going to break us. We’re strong, we’re Ukrainians. We have a desire to see our children alive. I think it’s a fair one.”
Zelensky’s address came the day after he signed an application for Ukraine to join the European Union. As he completed his speech, members of the European Parliament rose from their seats for a standing ovation.
Watch more from the speech:
"We desire to see our children alive. I think it's a fair one."— CNN (@CNN) March 1, 2022
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was met with a standing ovation from the European Parliament after a powerful speech that caused the EU translator on the English language feed to choke up with emotion. pic.twitter.com/kTlBGO6GEq
Christina Prignano can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @cprignano.