US President Joe Biden on Wednesday (local time) renewed assurance of his country’s support to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the ongoing military conflict with Russia during a meeting at the White House.
“Thank you first of all,” Zelenskyy told Biden, adding, “It’s a great honour to be here.”
“Thank you so much, Mr President. Of course thanks to bipartisan support, thanks to Congress, and thanks from our just ordinary people to your ordinary people, Americans. I really appreciate it,” he told Biden.
Zelenskyy then presented Biden with the hero’s award, which he said was passed along from a captain in the Ukrainian military fighting in the Donbas region.
“One guy who’s really, really a hero, real captain, and he asked me to pass his award, and he asked me to pass his award to President Biden,” Zelenskyy said, adding, “He’s very brave and he said give it to very brave President, and I want to give you, that is a cross for military merit.”
Biden thanked Zelenskyy, saying he would send the Ukrainian captain a US command coin in return.
“Undeserved but much appreciated, thank you,” Biden said, adding, “Well, we have a tradition here, and I will give it to him. My son who fought in Iraq, they have what they call a command coin. Have you seen those coins we get in the battlefield? I will make sure that he gets one of those. Thank you.”
He also remarked on 300 days of Russia’s war in Ukraine as he spoke to reporters.
“Mr President, it’s good to have you back,” Biden told Zelenskyy, adding, “It’s an honour to be by your side in the united defence against what is a brutal, brutal war waged by Putin.”
“Hard to believe, 300 days going through this, and Putin has waged a brutal assault on the Ukrainians’ right to exist as a nation, and the attack on innocent Ukrainian people for no reason other than to intimidate,” Biden added, noting the escalated Russian attacks on energy and civil infrastructure.
Putin is “trying to use winter as a weapon,” Biden said.
He reassured that Americans, along with European allies, stand with Ukraine.
In his first foreign trip since the war began, Zelenskyy will hold a news conference with Biden and address a joint meeting of Congress at 7:30 p.m. ET, reported CNN.
Biden is set to announce an additional USD 1.8 billion in security assistance to Ukraine during the visit, with the coveted Patriot missile systems as part of that package. Additionally, the Congress is poised to sign off on another USD 45 billion in aid for Ukraine and NATO allies, deepening the commitment that has helped Kyiv’s forces inflict an unexpectedly bloody price on Putin’s forces.
That’s on top of dozens of previous financial and military aid packages from the US since the war began. Experts say the Patriot defence missile system will be a valuable addition to Ukraine’s air defence.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced an additional USD 1.85 billion in security assistance for Ukraine, which includes the Patriot missile defence systems.
The Patriot’s radar system combines “surveillance, tracking, and engagement functions in one unit,” according to the Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS), which makes it stand out among other air defence systems. The system’s engagements with incoming aerial threats are “nearly autonomous” aside from needing a “final launch decision” from the humans operating it.
Ukraine has repeatedly asked for the US Army’s Patriot — an acronym for Phased Array Tracking Radar for intercept on Target — system, as it is considered one of the most capable long-range air defence systems on the market.
In recent weeks, the Russian military has increasingly attacked Ukraine’s power grid and infrastructure as winter approached and the temperatures dropped. Those attacks have only further fuelled Ukraine’s asks for the Patriot. (ANI)
This report is filed by ANI news service. TheNewsMill holds no responsibility for this content.