Speculations about a possible visit by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy have intensified in the US capital Washington. Several US media reported yesterday evening (local time) that he wanted to speak personally before the US Congress this Wednesday and also meet US President Joe Biden.
It would be the Ukrainian president's first trip abroad since Russia's war of aggression began in February. There was no official confirmation of a visit in Washington. There was also no information from Kyiv about a planned trip.
Increased security at the US Capitol
First, the online news site "Punchbowl News" reported on the planned trip - other US media quickly followed. Although the details have not yet been determined, the US Capitol police have increased security for a possible visit today, the news portal "Axios" wrote, citing several unnamed sources. A reporter from the broadcaster CBS quoted a member of parliament on Twitter, who confirmed the plans. However, she emphasized that it was not yet clear whether it would really work.
Zelenskyi has not left his country since the war began on February 24. For appearances on the political world stage - for example at the G7 summit in Elmau, Bavaria - he always had himself connected digitally from Ukraine. The Ukrainian President has traveled to the combat zone several times - in contrast to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has not been to the front once.
Zelenskyi previously said in his video speech yesterday that this week is extremely important for Ukraine "to get through this winter and next year" and "to get the necessary support and finally the Ukrainian flag will fly on all sections of our border". .
USA with financial aid in the billions
The US has provided Ukraine with billions in military aid since the start of the war. Recently there have been reports that the US government is considering supplying Ukraine with the powerful Patriot air defense system. So far, there has been no official confirmation from Washington. However, the government did not dismiss the reports as false. According to experts, the Patriot air defense system would partly reshuffle the cards in Ukraine, which was attacked by Russia. It can repel aircraft, cruise missiles, drones or missiles even at a greater distance.
Moscow recently warned Washington of a Patriot delivery. Like other heavy weapons, these complexes would become "lawful priority targets" for Russian forces, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said last week in Moscow. The US government is already delivering Himars multiple rocket launchers and the Nasams air defense system to Ukraine.
Pelosi calls on congressmen to attend in person
Yesterday, Republicans and Democrats in the US Congress also agreed on a budget with a volume of 1.7 trillion US dollars (1.6 trillion euros). Among other things, it provides for 44.9 billion US dollars (42.3 billion euros) in aid for Ukraine. However, the Senate and the House of Representatives still have to vote on the draft.
Outgoing Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi wrote in a letter yesterday urging MPs "to be present in person at Wednesday night's session". She did not give an explicit reason for this and only wrote: "Please be present on Wednesday evening when we are particularly concentrating on democracy."