Russia not seeking regime change in Ukraine – Foreign Ministry
Moscow is not aiming to overthrow the current leadership in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said, amid the ongoing military campaign in the neighboring state.
“Its objectives don’t include occupation of Ukraine, destruction of its statehood, or the toppling of the current government. It’s not directed against the civilian population,” Zakharova told reporters at a regular press conference on Wednesday.
The spokeswoman reiterated that Moscow wants to defend the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, which broke away from Ukraine shortly after the 2014 coup in Kiev. She added that Russia seeks the “demilitarization and denazification” of Ukraine.
Zakharova accused NATO of “flooding” the country with weapons, which has created “a military threat” to Moscow.
President Volodymyr Zelensky, meanwhile, repeatedly said that Ukraine had never posed a threat to Russia. Kiev stated that the Russian attack was entirely unprovoked and denied claims that it was planning to retake the rebellious republics by force.
Russia claims that it is only hitting military sites, such as airfields, air defense units, and radar stations. Ukraine, however, has accused Moscow of heavy shelling of residential areas in Kiev, Kharkov, and other cities.
Many countries, including the US, UK, and EU member states, imposed sweeping sanctions on Russia.