Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday urged Washington to remain united, as questions hover over American support for Kyiv following midterm elections to determine control of the US Congress.
US President Joe Biden, who has been a key ally of Ukraine and provided weapons and financial backing, has been encouraging voters to back Democrats in the House of Representatives and the Senate.
If both flip, Biden would be left as little more than a lame duck, calling into question continued robust US support for Kyiv.
“I call on you to maintain unwavering unity, as it is now, until that very day when we all hear those important words we have been dreaming of … Until we hear that peace has finally been restored,” Zelensky said in a recorded address, receiving the US Liberty Medal.
“Democracies must not stop on their way to the victory. As in any democratic society, Ukrainians have different views on life and politics,” Zelensky said.
“But when Russia decided to destroy our freedom and wipe Ukraine off the face of the earth, we immediately got united and we keep this unity.”
Later in the day, the US ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, met with Zelensky in Kyiv.
The meeting was held “to discuss the unwavering US commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine”, said Nate Evans, spokesman for the US mission to the UN.
“She reiterated that the United States is steadfast in its support for Ukraine and is prepared to stand with Ukraine as long as it takes,” said Evans.
The US Congress committed $40 billion for Ukraine in May with support across party lines and Ukraine’s defence minister this week thanked the US after Kyiv took receipt of more air defence systems.