Another major meeting is coming up later today – between US President Joe Biden, who’s on the final day of his Poland trip, and leaders of the Bucharest Nine. This is a group consisting of members of Nato’s eastern flank: Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia and Lithuania.
The members are among the strongest supporters of military aid to Ukraine and today’s talks will focus on supplying regional defence and more aid.
These nine eastern European nations joined the Nato alliance after years of Cold War domination by the then-Soviet Union.
They’ve been critical of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine since Russian President Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.
It is worth noting that Joe Biden promised new military aid for Ukraine worth $500 million during a surprise visit to Kyiv on Monday, almost a year to the day since Russia’s invasion.
In a trip showing solidarity with Kyiv, Biden also said additional sanctions would be announced this week against the Russian elite and companies trying to evade sanctions to “back the Russian war machine”.
The military aid package will include artillery ammunition, anti-armour systems and air surveillance radars “to help protect the Ukrainian people from aerial bombardments,” he said.
“Freedom is priceless. It is worth fighting for as long as it takes. And that’s how long we’re going to be with you, Mr President. As long as it takes,” Biden told President Volodymyr Zelenskiy after talks.
Biden appeared to make no mention of fighter jets, which Ukraine has been seeking from Western allies to help it push back the Russian forces.
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