US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made an unannounced visit to Kyiv on Wednesday, in a show of solidarity with Ukraine amid its standoff with Russia over the war. Blinken met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and other officials to discuss security, energy, and anti-corruption issues.
During his two-day visit, staying overnight in Ukraine for the first time since before Russia’s February 2022 invasion, Blinken will likely announce a new package of US assistance worth more than $1bn, a senior State Department official said in a briefing for reporters on the trip.
Blinken’s visit, the first since the Ukrainian counteroffensive began, Ukraine and Russia have escalated in recent weeks.
Blinken said that the US was “firmly” committed to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and that it would provide additional security assistance to help Ukraine defend itself. He also said that the US was “actively” looking at strengthening sanctions against Russia if it further violated Ukraine’s borders or sovereignty.
Blinken’s visit was seen as a sign of Biden’s renewed engagement with Ukraine and his willingness to confront Russia.