Zelenskyy ‘Determined’ Plea to US Congress: Ship Extra Planes


WASHINGTON (AP) – Preventing for his nation’s survival, Ukraine’s chief made a “determined” plea Saturday to American lawmakers for the US to assist get extra warplanes to his army and minimize off Russian oil imports as Kyiv tries to stave off the Russian invasion. .

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy opened the personal video name with US lawmakers by telling them this can be the final time they see him alive. He has remained in Kyiv, the capital, which has an unlimited Russian armored column threatening from the north.

Showing in what’s now his trademark army-green shirt in entrance of a white wall with the Ukrainian flag, he advised them Ukraine must safe its skies, both by way of a no-fly zone enforced by NATO or by way of the supply of extra warplanes so Ukraine might higher defend itself. Zelenskyy has been pleading for a no-fly zone for days, however NATO has refused, saying it might provoke a widespread battle with Russia.

The hourlong change with some 300 members of Congress and their staffs got here as Russian troops continued to shell encircled cities and the variety of Ukrainians who’ve fled the nation grew to 1.4 million.

Political Cartoons

“President Zelensky made a determined plea,” stated Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer.

He stated Zelenskyy needs the US to facilitate the switch of planes from Japanese European allies. “I’ll do all I can to assist the administration to facilitate their switch,” Schumer stated.

The US is contemplating sending American-made F-16s as backfill to former Soviet bloc nations in Japanese Europe that are actually members of NATO. They, in flip, would ship Ukraine their very own Soviet-era MiGs, which Ukrainian pilots are educated to fly.

There seems to be a logistical downside, nevertheless, in sending the F-16s to Poland or different East European allies due to a manufacturing backlog. These nations would basically have to provide their MiGs to the Ukrainians and settle for an IOU from the US for the F-16s. The scenario is additional difficult as a result of the subsequent cargo of F-16s is about for Taiwan, and Congress can be reluctant to delay these deliveries because it eyes China.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken indicated the fighter jets are into account after assembly with Ukrainian Overseas Minister Dymtro Kuleba on the Poland-Ukraine border exterior the city of Korczowa.

“We’re speaking about and dealing on every thing,” Blinken advised reporters.

Blinken reiterated that the US help for Ukraine “not solely has been unprecedented, not solely is it going to proceed, it should enhance.”

The US Congress is engaged on a $ 10 billion bundle of army and humanitarian assist to Ukraine. Schumer advised Zelenskyy lawmakers hope to ship it shortly to Ukraine, in accordance with an individual on the decision and granted anonymity to debate it.

When Senate Republican chief Mitch McConnell requested in regards to the forms of army help his nation wants, Zelenskyy stated drones in addition to planes can be essentially the most useful.

Throughout the name, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia requested Zelenskyy in regards to the thought of ​​banning the import of Russian oil to the US, in accordance with two different individuals granted anonymity to debate the personal name. They stated Zelenskyy indicated such a ban can be efficient in placing stress on Russia.

Republicans and a rising variety of Democrats, together with Speaker Nancy Pelosi, again the thought of ​​a Russian oil import ban. The Biden administration has thus far resisted that step, anxious about rising costs on the pump.

Zelenskyy urged US lawmakers to sanction Russia’s oil and fuel sector, which has thus far escaped the mounting sanctions imposed by the Biden administration and different nations. He additionally urged lawmakers to droop Visa and Mastercard bank card entry in Russia.

“Something that might harm the Russian economic system will assist the Ukrainian individuals and will make this battle harder for Putin,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, RS.C., stated in a video posted to Twitter after the decision.

Zelenskyy’s workplace stated he additionally recommended the US contemplate imposing an embargo on all Russian items and stripping Russia of its most-favored-nation commerce standing.

Lawmakers are involved that Zelenskyy might be killed within the Russian invasion. They’re additionally anxious {that a} Ukrainian authorities beneath assault might be unable to operate and obtain assist.

When one lawmaker requested diplomatically what would occur if he was killed, Zelenskyy acknowledged the issues however implored Congress to do no matter it might to assist Ukraine combat off Russia’s assault on his nation.

Related Press writers Matthew Lee in Korczowa, Poland, and Michael Balsamo contributed to this report.

Copyright 2022 The Related Press. All rights reserved. This materials is probably not printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Source link

Leave a Comment