Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak expects an increase in the defensive support for our country from international partners, as well as increased sanctions pressure on Russia, which will allow to end the aggressive war and sit down at the negotiating table. He told it on French TV channel TF1.
"Currently, Mariupol remains the most tragic and tense point on the map of Ukraine. That's where the fierce fighting is taking place. As for the information that the Russians have gained control of the city... No, that's not true. Yes, they are in the city, but the area where the Ukrainian heroes stand remains under the control of our soldiers. They are there together with civilians, there are even children there," Andriy Yermak said.
He stressed that the Ukrainian authorities continue to fight and do everything to save the lives of these people.
According to him, the military-political leadership of the country is in constant contact with the fighters who remain in Mariupol, and receives firsthand information about the situation in the city.
"The struggle for Mariupol does not end. This is a Ukrainian city. And it will always be like that," said the Head of the President's Office.
Andriy Yermak confirmed that Ukraine will now need heavy weapons to counter Russia more effectively.
"This is something that will allow us to protect our sky during the constant bombing. These are tanks. These are remedies against ship attacks. MLRS and more. But I would like to emphasize once again that our partners have an exhaustive list. We look forward to even greater support. With this support and a strong sanctions policy, we will surely win," he said.
Andriy Yermak reminded that a group of international and Ukrainian experts has been set up pursuant to the instructions of President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy who are analyzing the effectiveness of the current sanctions and developing proposals for new restrictive measures. An action plan to strengthen sanctions on the Russian Federation developed by the Yermak-McFaul international group of experts has already been presented.
"It contains clear, definite sanctions that we will propose to our partners - the EU and its member states, as well as the United States, Great Britain and other countries - to apply against Russia. The fact that the war in Ukraine continues, our people, our children are being killed, makes it clear that the current sanctions policy is insufficient. It needs to be strengthened. It needs to be updated, new sanctions need to be developed constantly. And I would like to emphasize that the EU's support for a full embargo on energy, Russian gas and oil, is very important to us. Also the application of sanctions against all Russian banks. It is important to elaborate sanctions recognizing Russia as a country that sponsors terrorism. Also, in my opinion, the issue of including Russia in the FATF blacklist should be considered, following the example of other countries to which such measures have already been applied. And much more," Andriy Yermak said.
The Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine also noted that in a situation where a full-scale war is being waged against our state virtually throughout the territory, it is difficult to negotiate with an aggressor who ignores not only international law, but also the laws of war.