Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Foreign and Defense Ministers Anthony Blinken and Lloyd Austin, respectively, met in Kyiv on Sunday, the Ukrainian presidency said.
“The Americans are in Kyiv today. They are now talking with the president,” Oleksiy Aristovich, one of Zelensky’s aide, said in an interview broadcast on YouTube.
The US has not commented on the trip – or even confirmed that it will take place – possibly due to security concerns involved in the trip of senior government officials to the Ukrainian capital.
This is the first meeting of the Ukrainian president with representatives of the US government in Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion on February 24.
Sunday’s talks are aimed primarily at dealing with US arms supplies to Ukraine.
“Friendship and cooperation between Ukraine and the United States are stronger than ever,” Zelensky wrote in a tweet, without going into details.
In turn, Aristovich on YouTube repeated the desire of the Ukrainian government to acquire “offensive weapons”. “As long as we cannot respond, there will be a ‘new bucha’ every day,” he said, referring to the city northwest of Kyiv that became a symbol of the atrocities committed during the Russian occupation of the region in March.
“American representatives will not come here if they are not willing to donate [armas]”, He said.
On Saturday, Zelensky said he was “grateful” to the US government for helping Ukraine, but reiterated that he wanted “heavier and stronger weapons” to counter the Russian military.
Oleksiy Aristovich also claimed that “defense lines were on the verge of collapse” in Mariupol, a port city in southern Ukraine largely controlled by Russian forces, where the last Ukrainian fighters – along with civilians – holed up in a large steel plant, at Azovstal.
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