On the one-year anniversary of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and just days after the U.S. promised millions more in support for the embattled country, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy issued a challenge to the growing number of Americans who question the amount of support the country is receiving.
On Friday, the Ukrainian leader responded to a question about American voters becoming less supportive of aiding Ukraine.
Zelenskyy began by thanking Congress, President Joe Biden, the American media and the American people for supporting his country in the fight against Russia.
However, he quickly changed his tone, warning the U.S. that if they stop providing support for Ukraine, America will no longer be the leader of the world.
“And that percentage of Americans as you mentioned is increasing, I can tell them only one thing,” Zelenskyy said. “If they don’t change their opinion, if they don’t understand us, if they don’t support Ukraine, they will lose NATO … and they will lose their leadership position in the world.”
“Are American children any different than ours?” he asked. “Don’t Americans enjoy the same things as we do? I don’t think we’re that different.”
Zelenskyy’s comments come just days after Biden took a surprise trip to Kyiv, meeting with the Ukrainian president and promising another $500 million to the war-torn country.
Biden promised “unwavering support” to Ukraine during his visit and vowed to back Zelenskyy for “as long as it takes.”
“One year later, Kyiv stands and Ukraine stands, democracy stands,” Biden said. “The Americans stand with you and the world stands with you.”
Russia invaded on February 24, 2022, and since that time, the United States has pledged nearly $200 billion in assistance to Ukraine, including weapons, ammunition, long-range missiles and tanks.
When Biden visited, Zelenskyy also warned that World War III would be inevitable if China were to ally with Russia. Those comments came two days after U.S. intelligence officials revealed that they believe China is considering sending aid to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s forces.
“For us, it is important that China does not support the Russian Federation in this war,” the Ukrainian president told German daily paper Die Welt, according to Reuters. “In fact, I would like it to be on our side. At the moment, however, I don’t think it’s possible.”
“But I do see an opportunity for China to make a pragmatic assessment of what is happening here,” Zelenskyy added. “Because if China allies itself with Russia, there will be a world war, and I do think that China is aware of that.”
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