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'Not hiding' Ukraine president Zelensky back in Kyiv for the first time since Russian invasion

I stay here, in Kyiv, on Bankova, not hiding. And I am not afraid of anyone as long as needed to win this war, our national war,” Mr Zelensky said in a video recorded in his office and shared on his Facebook page.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks to media in Kyiv (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office/AP)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks to media in Kyiv (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office/AP)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks to media in Kyiv (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office/AP)

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky released a new video from his office in the capital city Kyiv on late Monday night, which he visited for the first time since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began on 24 February.

I stay here, in Kyiv, on Bankova, not hiding. And I am not afraid of anyone as long as needed to win this war, our national war,” Mr Zelensky said in a video recorded in his office and shared on his Facebook page.

The Ukrainian president said he was not hiding and that the country will rebuild everything being destroyed by Russian troops in a bid to capture the former Soviet territory.

“There will be no trace of the enemy. We will make our cities destroyed by the invader better than any city in Russia,” the Ukrainian leader said.

Mr Zelensky started the video showing the night time view outside his Kyiv office and walked to his seat, from where he addressed the rest of the video.

“It is Monday evening. You know, we used to say: Monday is a hard day. There is war in the country, so every day is Monday,” the Ukrainian leader said from Kyiv, as both remain on Russia’s target for the fall of Ukraine.

Confirming that he is not going anywhere even as Ukraine remains under Russian invasion for 13 days, Mr Zelensky said that he will keep pushing for negotiations to end the siege.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during an interview with Reuters in Kyiv. Photo: Umit Bektas/Reuters

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during an interview with Reuters in Kyiv. Photo: Umit Bektas/Reuters

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during an interview with Reuters in Kyiv. Photo: Umit Bektas/Reuters

“We are realists so we will talk. We will insist on negotiations until we find a way to tell our people: this is how we will come to peace. Exactly to peace,” he said.

Stating that the current war on Ukraine and its resistance is only going to build a “strong position” for them in future, Mr Zelensky said: “We must realise that every day of struggle, every day of resistance creates better conditions for us. A strong position to guarantee our future after this war in peace.”

The president said that he has signed a decree on Monday to honour 96 “Ukrainian heroes” with state awards.

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Mr Zelensky slammed the attacks by Russian troops on certain sites on Monday, citing an attack at a bread factory in Makariv.

“Think about it — to fire at the bread factory. Who should you be to do that?” the Ukrainian president said.

The Ukrainian leader has accused Russia of firing, attacking and destroying civilian areas in contradiction with Vladimir Putin’s claims of military operation.

“Did it work?” Mr Zelensky said, referring to the humanitarian corridor Russia agreed on with Ukraine for safe passage of civilians.

“Russian tanks worked instead,” Mr Zelensky said over intense shelling that halted evacuation of locals trapped in the conflict-marred country for nearly a fortnight now.

The national movement of resistance in Ukraine, Mr Zelensky said, had unfolded in the southern part of the country, leading to “a nightmare” for Russia.

“We are not afraid of tanks and machine guns,” the leader said.

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