US President Joe Biden conveyed on his Twitter that he is “thrilled” to welcome Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to Washington DC, also wishing him a good flight.
This meeting on Wednesday marks the first time Zelensky would be outside his country since Russia invaded Ukraine, around ten months earlier.
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“He’s a national and global hero — I’m delighted to be able to hear from him,” Senator Mitt Romney, Republican of Utah said, on Tuesday, upon hearing the news of Zelensky’s visit to the US.
The meeting between the top leaders will be convened as the war enters a new phase, informed John Kirby, the strategic communications coordinator at the National Security Council. Kirby appeared on CNN this morning and briefed about the possible agenda of the meeting. “The President really believes that as we approach winter, as we enter … a new phase in this war, Mr. Putin’s aggression, that this is a good time for the two leaders to sit down face to face and talk,” he said.
Kirby added that Biden and his Ukrainian counterpart would also discuss how the war might end, a topic that generates varied disagreements in the West.
“I have no doubt they are going to talk about President Zelensky’s notion of a ‘just peace’ and what that looks like, what are the components of that, and how do we help Ukraine get to that point,” Kirby told CNN.
“Mr. Putin it’s obviously not interested in diplomacy right now. Quite the contrary. He’s interested in killing more Ukrainian civilians,” Kirby said, on the Russian leader who has been subjected to worldwide condemnation for invading Ukraine and threatening its sovereignty.
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The talks are likely to be centered around military and economic assistance by the US to Ukraine, alongside sustaining sanctions on Russia.
Zelensky will also address Congress at 7:30 p.m. ET, after the meeting with Biden. The two will hold a White House Press Conference. CNN reports that Biden is expected to announce an additional $2 billion for security assistance to Ukraine.