In his nightly speech, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky claimed he spoke with US senators on Saturday and called for Russia to be officially recognised as a “terrorist state.”

“I held talks today with a delegation of US senators led by Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitchell McConnell in Kyiv,” the 44-year-old president said. “I believe that this visit once again demonstrates the strength of bipartisan support for our state, the strength of ties between the Ukrainian and American nations.”

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According to Zelensky, discussions about US assistance for Ukraine and strengthening sanctions on Russia took occurred throughout the meeting.

“I expressed gratitude for the historic decision to renew the Lend-Lease program. I called for the official recognition of Russia as a terrorist state,” Zelensky said.

On May 9, US President Joe Biden signed the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022 into law. The new bill, which relaxes some restrictions for the United States to lend or lease military equipment to Ukraine, was approved by a bipartisan majority in both the House and Senate.

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The bill’s sponsors claim it offers Biden considerably more ability to assist Ukraine in defending itself against Russia and discusses how the US can transfer weapons to Ukraine quickly.

In his nightly address, the Ukrainian president also mentioned food security, which he said he works with “on a daily basis.”

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“More and more countries around the world are realizing that Russia, by blocking the Black Sea for us and continuing this war, puts dozens of other countries at risk of a price crisis in the food market and even famine,” Zelensky said. “This is another incentive for our anti-war coalition to act more decisively together,” he added.