Kremlin says Zelenskiy call for Western ban on all Russians is irrational

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Russian President Putin holds annual news conference in Moscow

MOSCOW (Reuters) -The Kremlin on Tuesday dismissed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's call for a Western travel ban on all Russians as irrational, saying that Europe would ultimately have to decide if it wanted to pay the bills for Zelenskiy's "whims."

In an interview with The Washington Post, Zelenskiy called on Western leaders to stop allowing Russians to travel to their countries as punishment for President Vladimir Putin's decision to send troops into Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said there was no chance Russians could be isolated from the rest of the world, and questioned if Europe should continue supporting Zelenskiy.

"The irrationality of his thinking in this case is off the scale," Peskov said in a conference call with reporters.

"This can only be seen extremely negatively. Any attempt to isolate Russia or Russians is a process that has no prospects."

Sooner or later Europe will "start wondering whether Zelenskiy is doing everything right, and whether its citizens should pay for his whims," Peskov added.

Zelenskiy was quoted by the Post as saying that Russians should be forced to "live in their own world until they change their philosophy."

"Whichever kind of Russian … make them go to Russia," Zelenskiy was quoted as saying by the Post.

"They’ll say, ‘This [war] has nothing to do with us. The whole population can’t be held responsible, can it?’ It can. The population picked this government and they’re not fighting it, not arguing with it, not shouting at it."

(Reporting by Reuters; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)