Ukraine pledges to fight Russia
President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said Ukraine’s armed forces were able to repel any attack from Russia as the country marked its National Army Day with a display of American armored vehicles and patrol boats.
US President Joe Biden has pledged his “unwavering support” to Ukraine in its stalemate with Moscow and will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday to try to defuse the crisis.
Ukraine has accused Russia of massing tens of thousands of troops near its border in preparation for a possible large-scale military offensive, raising the prospect of open war between the two neighbors.
“The military of the Ukrainian armed forces continue to fulfill their most important mission – to defend the freedom and sovereignty of the state against the Russian aggressor,” Zelenskiy said in a statement on Monday.
“The Ukrainian army (…) is confident in its strength and capable of thwarting any plan of conquest of the enemy”, he declared.
Russia has dismissed talks of a new assault on Ukraine as bogus and inflammatory, but told the West not to cross its “red lines” and stop the eastward expansion of Ukraine. NATO alliance.
Zelenskiy will travel to Kharkiv, a traditional Ukrainian weapons manufacturing center, to mark a delivery of tanks, armored vehicles and armored vehicles manufactured at factories in the city.
He will also visit the Donetsk region, where the Ukrainian military has fought Russian-backed forces in a latent conflict that Kiev says has killed 14,000 since 2014.
Several cities in Ukraine are celebrating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of an independent army after gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
Kiev, Lviv and the southern port city of Odessa will showcase US-made Humvees. In Odessa, there will also be a handover ceremony for two recently delivered US Coast Guard patrol vessels intended to strengthen the Ukrainian Navy.
Ukraine urged NATO to speed up its entry into the military alliance and said Moscow has no veto power. NATO leaders gave their support, but said Ukraine must first carry out defense reforms and fight corruption.