| 4 December 2023, Monday |

Zelensky meets US Defense Secretary at Pentagon in ‘warm’, ‘engaging’ meeting

The Pentagon announced on Thursday that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin had a “very warm” and “very engaging” meeting in Washington, D.C.
“Both leaders had a great conversation,” Pentagon spokesman Pat Ryder told reporters when asked about the meeting at the Pentagon.

“It was really an opportunity for the Secretary to provide President Zelenskyy with an update on the security assistance that we’re providing to Ukraine,” he said.

“He reaffirmed that we’re going to continue to work very hard with Ukraine and our international allies and partners to ensure they have what they need to be successful on the battlefield, highlighting his personal commitment and involvement and working with international leaders on that front,” he said.

There was also an opportunity to discuss Ukraine’s longer-term capability requirements, according to Ryder.

Asked about skepticism in Congress about aid to Ukraine, Ryder said: “We will continue to work very closely with Congress to ensure they have the information they need to make informed decisions.”

Zelenskyy traveled to Washington DC early Thursday to meet US lawmakers on Capitol Hill, President Joe Biden at the White House and defense officials at the Pentagon.

Earlier this week, Zelenskyy was in New York to attend the UN General Assembly

Poland-Ukraine tension

Asked about Poland declaring it would refrain from providing additional weaponry to Ukraine, Ryder said: “I’ll refer you to Poland to speak about their own internal decisions.”

“It’s a sovereign decision for any country to decide what level of support that they’re going to provide,” he said, adding that Poland has been one of the leading countries in providing security assistance to Ukraine.

“Not only security assistance, but also in terms of providing significant humanitarian aid and support for more than a million displaced Ukrainians who have gone to Poland as a result of Russia’s invasion,” he added.

  • Anadolu Agency