Former President Donald Trump made the outlandish claim that he could end the war in Ukraine in 24 hours if he were still in office. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky responded to Trump’s comments, saying that the former president already had 24 hours to do so.
Zelensky’s remarks were in reference to when Trump was in office and Russia was occupying Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine.
In an interview with ABC News’s Martha Raddatz, Zelensky maintained that his position 16 months into the war has remained unchanged—he will not cede any territory to the Russians.
ABC News played a clip of Trump saying on the campaign trail, “If I’m president, I will have that war settled in one day, 24 hours.”
Zelensky responded, “It seems to me that the sole desire to bring the war to an end is beautiful.”
“But this desire should be based on some real-life experience,” he continued. “Well, it looks as if Donald Trump had already these 24 hours once in his time. We were at war, not a full-scale war, but we were at war, and as I assume, he had that time at his disposal, but he must have had some other priorities.”
“If we are talking about ending the war at the cost of Ukraine, in other words, to make us give up our territories, well, I think, in this way, Biden could have brought it to an end even in five minutes, but we would not agree,” he continued.
“It is important for us to preserve that bipartisan support of Ukraine,” he said. “We understand that there are some dangerous signals coming from particular actual politicians in the U.S. regarding the reduce of assistance for Ukraine, or there might be some alternative vision and that is dangerous for us.”
Zelensky’s response to Trump’s comments is likely to be met with skepticism by many conservatives. Trump is still a popular figure among many Republicans, and his supporters are likely to believe that he could have ended the war in Ukraine if he had been re-elected.
Asked what he would say to Americans who think U.S. has given “enough” to Ukraine, Zelenskyy tells @MarthaRaddatz that he appreciates all the help.
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) July 9, 2023