As Ukrainians travel to take up arms, how long can Kyiv hold out?

In the News podcast: Is Kyiv prepared for a full scale attack?

On Tuesday, Ukraine's president Volodymyr Zelenskiy gave an impassioned speech via video link to a packed out European Parliament.

“We are fighting for our rights, our lives, our freedom,” he told MEPs. “Prove that you are with us, prove that you will not let us go, prove that you indeed are Europeans. And then life will win over death and light will win over darkness.”

Zelenskiy's speech followed his formal request, on Monday, that Ukraine's application to join the European Union be fast-tracked. Meanwhile, satellite images showed a 60km convoy of Russian military vehicles approaching Ukraine's capital city of Kyiv, home to three million people.

Irish Times journalist Dan McLaughlin, who is currently in Kyiv, spoke to some of the men and women taking up arms to defend Ukraine.


"You even see young parliamentary deputies who imagined having a career in politics trying to reform the country and take it towards Europe, they're posting pictures of themselves with kalashnikovs and going to the front line, it's incredible," McLaughlin told the podcast.

“I’m sure they’re scared on some level as to what might happen but at the same time it’s like this is the only path that exists for them now. They don’t want to live under occupation, they want to live in a free Ukraine.”

Irish Times Paris correspondent Lara Marlowe also speaks to In the News about the 26-hour bus journey she took across central and eastern Europe with Ukrainians travelling home to join the resistance against Russia. Marlowe reports from the Polish border town of Przemysl, while Brussels correspondent Naomi O'Leary reflects on the significance of the latest European Parliament vote condemning the Russian invasion and Ukraine's request to be fast-tracked into the EU.

In the News is presented by reporters Sorcha Pollak and Conor Pope. Listen to the podcast here:

Sorcha Pollak

Sorcha Pollak

Sorcha Pollak is an Irish Times reporter and cohost of the In the News podcast