You cannot stand aside from the aggressive war waged by Russia against Ukraine if you share democratic principles. Defeating tyranny requires strong and effective support from people around the world. This was said by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a conversation with students and lecturers of leading institutions of higher education in Australia.
"This is a struggle between autocracy and democracy. That's why you can't stand aside if you defend common principles with Ukraine. I am sure that the majority of people and countries in the world defend the same values that we defend today on the battlefield at the cost of our own lives," he said.
The Head of State noted that now it is not enough just to sympathize with Ukraine and Ukrainians - effective support is needed.
"We are grateful for this, for the support in words, but, of course, we need support in deeds. To defeat tyranny, one must be very specific. And right now. After all, every minute, every hour, every day we are losing the most important thing that the planet Earth, God and our parents gave us - people's lives," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The President thanked Australian citizens who support Ukraine as volunteers and provide humanitarian aid.
He also noted that an information war is currently unfolding in the world, as Russia has a large propaganda machine and spends billions of dollars on it.
"We understand everything about Russia. We know that the enemy has come to our land. But in different parts of the world, which are located far from Ukraine - on the African continent, in Asia - Russia spreads disinformation that they have not attacked anyone. And in some parts of the world it works. Even after eight years of war, people cannot open their hearts to the truth. Sometimes they are OK with that, sometimes their business interests are more important to them than people's lives when making decisions," Volodymyr Zelenskyy explained.
In this regard, the Head of State called on students, young people who actively use social networks, to spread in their countries true information about Ukraine and what is happening in it.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy emphasized that as President, he does everything every day to ensure that Russia cannot find allies anywhere on the planet in this unjust war of aggression.
"Fortunately, I'm not the only one doing it, we all are doing it - many leaders in the world are working to convey the truth. And we see that Russia is losing allies," the Head of State said.
He noted that he would like such an influential country as China to join the united world position regarding Russia's war against Ukraine.
"Today, China is balancing and adheres to neutrality. I will honestly say that this neutrality is much better than China joining Russia. I believe that the Chinese society, the people of this country will make a wise choice. Still, it is important for us that China does not help Russia," the President said.
The communication took place on the basis of the Australian National University. The moderator was the rector of this university, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Australia Julie Bishop. Representatives of almost 20 educational institutions joined the event in the online format.