WASHINGTON (Nexstar) — For the first time since Russia invaded Ukraine, top US officials traveled to Kyiv to meet with President Volodmyr Zelenskyy.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin meet with the Ukrainian president for 3 hours and pledged their continued support for the war-torn country.
“This was, in our judgement, an important moment,” Blinken said.
He said the meeting between top American and Ukrainian officials happened at a time when Russia is failiing in its primary goal — “to totally subjugate Ukraine, to take away its sovereignty, to take away its independence. That has failed.”
The problems for Russia aren’t only on the battle field, Blinken said.
“A military that is dramatically under performing. An economy, that as a result of sanctions as a result of a mass exodus from Russia, that is in shambles,” he said.
Officials also announced US diplomats will begin returning to Ukraine starting next week. However reopening the US Embassy in Kyiv will take longer.
Still, Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues. Part of the meeting Blinken and Austin had with Zelenskyy centered around the type of aid Ukraine will need moving forward.
“As this fight evolves, their needs will change. And so, as those needs change, we’d like to be one step ahead,” Austin said.
As part of the pledge for continued support, the US announced $300 million in additional military aid, plus the sale of $165 million worth of ammunition.