Biden will meet Zelenskiy with $225 Million in Military Aid

PARIS (Reuters) – U.S. president Joe Biden is scheduled to meet Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Friday in Paris with a package containing $225 million worth of weapons, on the sidelines D-Day commemoration events.

This will be the first time they have spoken face to face since Zelenskiy’s visit to Washington in December when both of them fought against Republican opposition for more Ukraine aid. Next week, they will be meeting again at the G7 summit in Italy. Rich nations are discussing using Russian assets that were frozen after the invasion of Ukraine to provide $50 billion to Ukraine.

Zelenskiy said to Reuters in a statement last month that Western nations are taking too much time to decide on aid.

In remarks made in Normandy on Thursday, Biden drew an analogy between World War Two’s fight against tyranny, and Ukraine’s war with Russia. He called Russian President Vladimir Putin “dictator.”

Sources said that the $225 million worth of new weapons includes air defense interceptors and artillery rounds, among others. Sources say that Ukraine is struggling to defend Kharkiv after a Russian offensive on May 10, which overran some villages.

Biden changed his position last week and said that Ukraine could fire weapons supplied by the United States at Russian military targets in support of Kharkiv’s offensive.

Jon Finer, the deputy national security advisor at Washington’s Department of State, said that the United States was trying to catch up on Ukraine’s weapons needs.

Finer said that the U.S. lacked the supply of air defense interceptors and artillery munitions to help the Ukrainians turn the tide in the war.

He said that the Russia-Ukraine conflict is not only fought on the battlefield but also in the factories of Europe and Ukraine.

Daleep Singh told the same group that it was difficult to reach a consensus about the frozen assets.

We’re knee-deep in trying to make a deal, said Singh. He said that he would be returning to Italy to continue negotiations on Friday.

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