Pelosi brings Democratic delegation to Kyiv, meets Zelensky in surprise visit


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US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi flew unannounced to Kyiv, Ukraine on Saturday, where she and some of her fellow Democrats met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Zelenskyy greeted the delegation, shaking hands with lawmakers on a street in the capital ahead of their meeting, according to a video tweeted by the Ukrainian president on Sunday morning.

“You are all welcome,” Zelenskyy can be heard saying.

The Democratic delegation included: Speaker Jim McGovern, Speaker Gregory Meeks, Speaker Adam Schiff, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Congressman Bill Keating and Congressman Jason Crow.

Not all members entered Ukraine or met with Zelenskyy.

Pelosi, second in the presidency to vice president, is the highest-ranking US leader to visit Ukraine since the war began.

PELOSI MAKES SURPRISE VISIT TO kyiv, REAFFIRMS US COMMITMENT TO UKRAINE DURING MEETING WITH ZELENSKYY

In a meeting later that day, Pelosi affirmed the United States’ commitment to helping Ukraine.

“We believe we are visiting you to thank you for your fight for freedom. We are on the frontier of freedom and your fight is everyone’s fight,” Pelosi said. “Our commitment is to be here for you until the fight is over.”

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Ukrainian President Zelenskyy on May 1, 2022.

In a separate statement, Pelosi’s office said the Democratic delegation would work to approve a new $33 billion aid package requested by President Joe Biden.

“Our Congressional delegation had the solemn opportunity and extraordinary honor to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and other senior Ukrainian officials in Kyiv,” Pelosi’s office said in a statement.

BIDEN SEEKS $33B FROM CONGRESS FOR ADDITIONAL EMERGENCY FUNDING IN UKRAINE

“Our delegation traveled to Kyiv to send an unequivocal and resounding message to the world: America stands firmly with Ukraine,” the office continued. “Our meeting with President Zelenskyy began with him thanking the United States for the substantial assistance we have provided. He conveyed the clear need for continued security, economic and humanitarian assistance from the part of the United States in addressing the devastating human toll on the Ukrainian people by Putin’s diabolical invasion – and our delegation proudly delivered the message that additional American support is on the way as we work to transform the President Biden’s strong demand for funding into a legislative package.”

In this image released by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office on Sunday, May 1, 2022, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, center, arrives with her delegation ahead of her meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in Kyiv, Ukraine, on Saturday April 30, 2022. Pelosi, second in the presidency after the vice president, is the highest-ranking U.S. leader to visit Ukraine since the war began, and his visit marks a major show of continued support for the the country's struggle against Russia.

In this image released by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office on Sunday, May 1, 2022, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, center, arrives with her delegation ahead of her meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in Kyiv, Ukraine, on Saturday April 30, 2022. Pelosi, second in the presidency after the vice president, is the highest-ranking U.S. leader to visit Ukraine since the war began, and his visit marks a major show of continued support for the the country’s struggle against Russia.
(Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

Pelosi added, “Our delegation expressed our respect and gratitude to President Zelensky for his leadership and our admiration for the people of Ukraine for their courage in the fight against Russian oppression.”

BIDEN ANNOUNCES ADDITIONAL $800 MILLION IN MILITARY AID TO UKRAINE

Shortly after the meeting, the group left Ukraine for Warsaw, Poland, Pelosi added.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Ukrainian President Zelenskyy on May 1, 2022.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Ukrainian President Zelenskyy on May 1, 2022.
(Zelensky)

Zelenskyy tweeted after the meeting, via translation: “The United States is a leader in strong support of Ukraine in the fight against Russian aggression. Thank you for helping to protect sovereignty and the territorial integrity of our state!”

BLINKEN, AUSTIN TO VISIT UKRAINE ON SUNDAY, SAYS ZELENSKYY

Last week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin visited Ukraine where they discussed increasing US financial and military assistance to Ukraine. .

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and United States House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) attend a meeting, as Russia's attack on Ukraine continues, in Kyiv, Ukraine, 30 April 2022. Picture taken April 30, 2022. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and United States House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) attend a meeting, as Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues, in Kyiv, Ukraine, 30 April 2022. Picture taken April 30, 2022. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS
(Ukrainian Presidential News Service/Handout via REUTERS)

“The last few weeks, the pace, the numbers – everything has improved. I’m grateful for that,” Zelenskyy said after the game.

In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, April 8, 2022. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, April 8, 2022. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)
(Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

Shortly after senior US officials visited with Zelenskyy, Biden asked Congress to approve an additional $33 billion in aid. More than $20 billion of the proposed aid was for weapons.

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Last week, Biden announced an additional $800 million in security aid to help Ukraine fight off Russian invaders in Luhansk and Donetsk.

Caitlin McFall of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.




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