to give Ukraine a guarantee of NATO membership? Everyone is afraid,” he added.
Zelensky said that 137 Ukrainians, both military personnel and civilians, had been killed since the start of the attack early Thursday. Another 316 had been wounded, he said.
Zelensky also said that Russian “sabotage groups” had entered the capital Kyiv, and urged the city’s citizens to remain vigilant and observe a curfew. The president added that he and his family remained in Ukraine, despite Russia identifying him as “target number one”. “They want to destroy Ukraine politically by taking down the head of state,” Zelensky said.
U.S. President Joe Biden said on Thursday Washington is in still unresolved “consultations” with India, when asked if Washington and Delhi were fully in sync on a response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine ahead of an expected U.N. Security Council vote.
Biden did not elaborate, but his short response to a question at a briefing at which he announced tough new sanctions on Russia over Ukraine drew attention to an awkward division between his administration and India, a country central to its efforts to push back against China’s growing power.
India has developed close ties with Washington in recent years but has a long-standing close relationship with Moscow, which remains a major supplier of its defense equipment.
The 15-member United Nations Security Council, of which India is a member, is likely to vote on Friday on a draft resolution that would condemn Russia for invading Ukraine and require Moscow to immediately and unconditionally withdraw, a senior U.S. administration official said.
Russia is expected to veto the step, but Washington sees the vote as a chance to try and isolate Moscow, seeking at least 13 votes in favor and an abstention by Russia’s partner – China.
Biden said Putin would be a pariah on the international stage as a result of his attack on Ukraine and “any nation that countenances Russia’s naked aggression against Ukraine will be stained by association.”
Asked if India was fully in sync with the United States, he said: “We’re in consultation with India today. We haven’t resolved that completely.”
In a statement, the U.S. State Department said U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar on Thursday and “stressed the importance of a strong collective response to condemn Russia’s invasion and call for an immediate withdrawal and ceasefire.”
In a tweet, Jaishankar said he discussed the implications of developments in Ukraine with Blinken, without disclosing further details about the call.
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