Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican Senators Susan Collins, John Cornyn and John Barrasso traveled to Kyiv to visit Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The US embassy tweeted about the senators’ visit to Ukraine on Saturday and published a video from their meeting with Zelenskyy.
“Welcome to Ukraine”, the translated tweet addressed to the senators. “We are together with Ukraine.”
In a statement on Saturday night, McConnell called it “an honor” to have met Zelenskyy and his top advisers and to “stand in solidarity with the heroic people of Ukraine.”
“It was inspiring to visit the historic capital of a beautiful country that has had to fight for its own survival. We saw on our own the courage, unity and determination of the Ukrainian people. The Ukrainians are fighting bravely against a mad intruder and have already succeeded beyond the skeptics wildest dreams, “said McConnell. “They are willing and determined to continue to fight for victory. Ukraine is not asking anyone else to fight their battle. They are just asking for the tools they need for self-defense.”
Senate minority leaders said Republican senators reaffirmed to Zelenskyy that the United States “stands completely behind Ukraine and will maintain our support until Ukraine wins this war.”
And he urged US allies to continue to do their part as well. McConnell also said that the pressure exerted on Russia by the United States and its allies is directly linked to US national security.
“It is entirely in our national interest to help Ukraine win this war and to help Ukraine and other countries deter second wars of aggression before they begin,” he said.
Senators traveled to Ukraine days before the Senate is expected to send a $ 40 billion package of military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine. The bill has broad bipartisan support and has already been adopted by the House.
This was the latest trip by top US officials to the war-torn country. On Sunday, the first lady, Dr Jill Biden, made another surprise trip, meet Ukraine’s first lady Olena Zelenska and visit Ukrainian children displaced by the war with Russia. Biden crossed the border from Slovakia into southwestern Ukraine for his unannounced visit to a public school in Uzhhorod, which was converted into a temporary shelter with 163 Ukrainians, including 47 children.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin as wellin Kyiv in April, and a delegation of House Democrats led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the capital earlier this month and met Zelenskyy.