Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky declared his country’s yearlong fight with Russia a “year of invincibility” on Friday, as he marked the anniversary of Russia’s invasion.
“It was a year of resilience. A year of care. A year of bravery. A year of pain. A year of hope. A year of endurance. A year of unity,” Zelensky said in an address to the Ukrainian people.
“The year of invincibility,” he added. “The furious year of invincibility.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin first ordered troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022, launching his “special military operation” into Russia’s neighbor.
Zelensky reflected on the Ukrainian response on that February day in Friday’s address, noting that “we woke up early and haven’t fallen asleep since.”
“Some people were afraid, some were shocked, some did not know what to say, but everyone felt what to do,” he added.
The Ukrainian president also expressed gratitude to his Western allies, with a particular nod to the advanced military aid they have slowly been convinced to provide.
“Ukraine has surprised the world. Ukraine has inspired the world. Ukraine has united the world,” Zelensky said. “There are thousands of words to prove it, but a few will suffice. HIMARS, Patriot, Abrams, IRIS-T, Challenger, NASAMS, Leopard.”
“I thank all of our partners, allies and friends who have stood side by side with us throughout the year,” he said, adding that he plans to deliver a separate address for the “international anti-Putin coalition” shortly.