Zelenskyy meets with Secretary Austin in Kyiv

Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Lloyd Austin in Kyiv on November 20, 2023
Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Lloyd Austin in Kyiv on November 20, 2023

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Nov. 20, during Austin's visit to Ukraine.

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Austin took to Twitter to reaffirm "steadfast support" the United States provides to Ukraine.

“We, along with our allies and partners, will continue to support Ukraine’s urgent battlefield needs and long-term defense requirements,” the secretary said.

Zelenskyy’s press service reported that the Ukrainian president thanked U.S. President Joe Biden, the White House, Congress, and the entire American people for supporting Ukraine.

“It is very important for us that the United States is with us,” the president said.

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“We count on your support and are proud to have you with us.”

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Zelenskyy briefed Austin about the current situation on the front, Kyiv’s strategic objectives, and the immediate needs of Ukraine's defenders, emphasizing the need for continuous supplies of weapons and ammunition from allies. Zelenskyy also stressed that Ukraine’s air defenses should be strengthened ahead of winter.

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The president also discussed with Austin the situation in the Black Sea and the operation of shipping lines that allow Ukraine to export its grain abroad, despite Russia’s threats to enforce a blockade of Ukrainian Black Sea port.

Also traveling to Kyiv with Austin was the Supreme Allied Commander Europe, U.S. Army General Christopher Cavoli.

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