'The bodies coming home will grow': Ukrainian MP's stark message to Russian people

25 February 2022, 16:43 | Updated: 25 February 2022, 16:53

Ukrainian MP Lesia Vasylenko's powerful message to Russian people

By Tim Dodd

Ukrainian MP Lesia Vasylenko urged Russian people to "come out on the streets" and demand an end to Putin's invasion of her country, warning "the number of Russian bodies coming home in coffins will be growing".

It comes as more than 130 people have been killed and hundreds more injured on the first day of Russia's military action in Ukraine - with fresh missile strikes reported on Friday morning as the war reached the capital.

Shelagh asked Ms Vasylenko: "If Kiev falls to Russian forces... and the reality is that [Putin] has overtaken Ukraine and now runs it, however he chooses to try and do that, what do you and your fellow Ukrainians do then?"

"To be honest, I have not been thinking of this question and pushing thoughts of it to the back of my mind," she replied.

"Because now it is important to concentrate on the defence. And now it is important to gather all energy and all forces to withstand so that this scenario doesn't become a reality."

Live updates: Fierce battle for Kyiv as residents take up arms to repel Russians

The MP continued: "There are far more Russian casualties than there are Ukrainian. As we speak now, there's more than 1000 reported Russian military casualties out of these 36 hours.

"Ukrainian military casualties count by the hundreds, not by the thousands.

'Our worst nightmare has come alive.'

"When we speak of these numbers, it's something for the Russian people to think about. Who is their leader, how crazy is he?

"I think that they should act now, come out on the streets and demand that his madness be stopped, because this madness and the number of Russian bodies coming back home in coffins will be growing."

Read more: Russian 'failed its invasion objectives' on day one as Ukraine mounts fierce fightback

Ukrainian people are being armed and urged to make petrol bombs to take on the invading Russian troops.

The Ministry of Defence has said Russia is likely to have failed to achieve its day one objectives, despite them seizing the Chernobyl area north of the capital.

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