Zelensky’s last-ditch plea for US aid runs into partisan divide

By RockedBuzz 6 Min Read

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.  (Photo: AFP)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. (Photo: AFP)

WASHINGTON – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky pleaded Tuesday in Washington for continued US army aid however the Republican House speaker poured chilly water on the determined supply of assist.

As Moscow demanded recent battle progress and predicted that any recent aid to Kyiv could be a “fiasco”, Zelensky’s try to hold Ukraine’s prime aide on the sidelines ran into an actual political rift. home US.

Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson, the gatekeeper of any deal, insisted after assembly with Zelensky that his social gathering wouldn’t approve President Joe Biden’s request for $60 billion in recent aid to Kyiv until Democrats meet their calls for on immigration.

“The Biden administration appears to be asking for billions of further {dollars} with no correct oversight, no clear technique to win, and not one of the solutions that I feel the American folks deserve,” Johnson advised reporters.

The Ukrainian president, who wore a black sweater with Ukraine’s small trident image, and olive inexperienced army trousers, didn’t touch upon his assembly with Johnson, however stated his talks with Senate leaders had been “pleasant and sincere”.

Zelensky, 45, was set to maneuver to the White House later for one-on-one talks with Biden – who has been a staunch supporter of him for the reason that February 2022 invasion of Russia – and a joint press convention.

Biden, 81, invited Zelensky to Washington a day after the White House warned that cash for Ukraine would disappear by the top of the yr with out an settlement with Congress.

– ‘Fiasco’ –

US Republicans have refused to again down until Biden agrees to measures on US-Mexico border safety and immigration reform – one of the crucial intractable points in US politics.

Senate Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer warned after assembly with Zelensky that Ukraine wanted the assistance “shortly” to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin’s forces from getting the higher of Ukraine.

The Kremlin scoffed on the affect of the US assist, echoing the arguments made by some senior Republicans who say that the continuation of the flood of weapons to Ukraine could be futile after stopping the Kyiv summer time counterattacks.

“It is necessary for everybody to grasp: the tens of hundreds of {dollars} poured into Ukraine didn’t assist it to succeed on the battlefield,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated on Tuesday.

“The tens of billions of {dollars} that Ukraine desires to pump with are additionally headed for the identical fiasco.”

Russia stated it was pushing ahead on the bottom, simply as Ukraine’s frozen winter deepens.

“Our models have made vital progress northeast of Novopokrovka,” stated the Moscow-based commander within the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia area, Yevgeny Balitsky.

Ukraine stated Russia launched a “huge volley” of armored automobiles in one other a part of the entrance close to Avdiivka within the east.

In a blow felt by civilians behind the entrance traces, Ukraine’s fundamental cellular operator stated it had been paralyzed by a “highly effective hacker assault.”

The disruption prevents air raid alerts from being despatched out, simply as Ukraine is coping with Russian nightly bombing.

The White House stated Russia is certainly paying a heavy worth for small beneficial properties, with greater than 13,000 lifeless and wounded within the east simply since October.

But “Russia appears to consider {that a} army standoff by the winter will undermine Western assist for Ukraine and finally give Russia the benefit regardless of Russia’s losses,” stated National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson.

– ‘Full mobilization’ –

As the United States considers its future Ukraine coverage, Kyiv’s fundamental European ally Poland urged world assist.

Poland’s prime minister-designate Donald Tusk referred to as for “full mobilization on the aspect of the free world, the West, to assist Ukraine on this warfare.”

Biden is prone to echo the message on the White House.

Republican senators blocked Biden’s request for $106 billion in emergency aid primarily for Ukraine and Israel final week.

Talks are going down behind the scenes on a deal that may give concessions to Republican calls for for harder measures towards unlawful immigration in return for the Ukraine package deal.

However, Biden, who’s searching for re-election subsequent yr, should thread a slender passage between giving Republicans what they need and never alienating the left of his personal social gathering.

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