Zelenskyy invites Trump to Ukraine, says he just needs 24 minutes to explain to him why he ‘can’t bring peace’

Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskyy, in an exclusive interview with “Meet the Press” that aired Sunday, invited Donald Trump to visit Ukraine after the former U.S. president promised he could end the war between Russia and Ukraine in 24 hours if he is re-elected in 2024.

Zelenskyy doubted Trump’s claim. “Former President Trump said that [in] about 24 hours, that he can manage it and finish the war. For me, what can I say? So he’s very welcome as well. President Biden was here, and he — I think he understood some details which you can understand only being here,” Zelenskyy told NBC News’ Kristen Welker. “So, I invite President Trump.”

“If he can come here, I will need 24 minutes — yes, 24 minutes. Not more. Yes. Not more — 24 minutes to explain [to] President Trump that he can’t manage this war” in that time frame, Zelenskyy said. “He can’t bring peace because of [Russian President Vladimir] Putin.”

Zelenskyy was unsure of whether Trump would have Ukraine’s back if he were to be re-elected, telling Welker: “Really, I don’t know. Really, I don’t know.”

In an interview with “Meet the Press” in September, Trump claimed that he’d resolve the war in Ukraine within 24 hours if he’s re-elected. He provided few details about how he would accomplish the task, saying: “If I tell you exactly, I lose all my bargaining chips.”

“I would say certain things to Putin. I would say certain things to Zelenskyy,” Trump said at the time, adding that he’d “make a fair deal for everybody.”

Other Republican presidential candidates have visited Ukraine and met with Zelenskyy during their campaigns, including former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Vice President Mike Pence, who has since suspended his 2024 campaign.

Zelenskyy also said he has had no contact with Trump since the former U.S. president left office in January 2021.

The Ukrainian president insisted that when it comes to support for Ukraine, it is not just the opinion of U.S. leaders that matters, but that of the American people too.

“It depends not only on the president institutionally. I think it depends on the opinion of Americans, of your society. I think that is most important,” he told Welker. “I think it’s important in the United States and E.U., the attitude of just ordinary people. It’s their support. It’s their money. It depends on them.”

He added: “I know that they support Ukraine, love us. And really, they understand our difficult, difficult war against Russia.”

Kristen Welker

Kristen Welker is the moderator of “Meet the Press”.

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