The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Zelensky spells out his vision of victory amid caution ahead of Russian holiday

Russia celebrates the Soviet Union's victory over Nazi Germany on May 9 with a parade, fireworks and speeches, but this year all eyes are on Vladimir Putin. (Video: Jason Aldag/The Washington Post, Photo: Heidi Levine for The Washington Post/The Washington Post)
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RIGA — Ukraine will enter into serious peace negotiations with Moscow only after Russian troops have been pushed back or retreated from all of the territory occupied since Feb. 24, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Friday, spelling out his vision of what a Ukrainian victory might look like.

His comments at an online event came as leaders from across Ukraine urged residents to be cautious ahead of Russia’s Victory Day, increasing patrols and instituting curfews amid warnings of increased missile strikes Monday.

Heavy fighting continued at the besieged Azovstal Iron and Steel Works in Mariupol, a focus of humanitarian efforts, where 50 civilians were evacuated on buses Friday, according to Ukraine officials.

Here’s what else to know

  • President Biden said the latest U.S. aid package to Ukraine “will provide additional artillery munitions, radars, and other equipment.”
  • Biden and other Group of Seven leaders will meet virtually with Zelensky during a G-7 forum Sunday, according to the German government.
  • European Union ambassadors did not reach a consensus Friday on a proposal to phase out Russian oil imports after strong pushback from member states, particularly Hungary.
  • Italian financial authorities said that they have frozen a $700-million megayacht that has been linked in media reports and by anti-Kremlin groups to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
  • First lady Jill Biden is visiting Romania and Slovakia this weekend, where she plans to spend Mother’s Day with Ukrainian women.
  • The Washington Post has lifted its paywall for readers in Russia and Ukraine. Telegram users can subscribe to our channel.