Ukraine war: Surrender and you'll be treated well, Zelenskyy tells Russian soldiers

Access to the comments Comments
By Euronews
A still image from a video message by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Tuesday 15th March 2022
A still image from a video message by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Tuesday 15th March 2022   -   Copyright  Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has called on Russian troops to surrender and promises they'll be treated "decently".

In a new video message Zelenskyy, speaking in Russian, addresses Russian conscripts and officers directly.

He said that Russian forces will take Ukrainian lives, but asks them why they're risking their own lives in the conflict.

"We hear your conversations in the intercepts. We hear what you really think about this war, about this disgrace and about your state. Your conversations with each other. Your calls home to your family. We hear it all," he said in the video which was posted overnight to his official Facebook page.

"I offer you a choice. On behalf of the Ukrainian people, I give you a chance. A chance to survive if you surrender to our forces," said Zelenskyy.

"We will treat you the way people are supposed to be treated. As people, decently - in a way that you were not treated in your army. And in a way your army does not treat ours. Choose."

Zelenskyy's message came as Russian forces escalated their bombardment of the Ukrainian capital, edging closer to the centre of Kyiv.

The human toll has been devastating - more than three million Ukrainians have been forced to flee their country since the start of the invasion, the vast majority of them women and children.

Although it is difficult to get any accurate casualty figures for either Ukrainian or Russian military losses, thousands are estimated to have been killed in the ongoing fighting.