Press "Enter" to skip to content

Biden hosts Germany's Scholz to discuss Ukraine support as war enters second year

President Biden on Friday hosted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the White House, where the two leaders tried to project a united front in support for Ukraine as it enters the second year of a war against invading Russian forces.

Scholz last visited the White House in February 2022, when Russia was amassing troops along the Ukrainian border. Friday’s visit came after a year of war and as both leaders have sought to assure the Ukrainians and other allies that their respective governments will back Ukraine for as long as it takes to end the conflict.

“I want to thank you, Olaf, for your strong and steady leadership. I mean that sincerely. It’s made a world of difference,” Biden said during an Oval Office meeting. “You stepped up to provide critical military support. And I would argue, beyond the military support, the moral support you’ve given Ukrainians has been profound. Profound.“

Scholz added that it was important for Germany and the United States to aid Ukraine and “that we give the message that we will continue to do so as long as it takes.”

That message echoed what Biden has said repeatedly during the past year, including during a trip to Kyiv last month to mark the anniversary of Russia’s invasion.

The two leaders did not respond to questions from reporters in the Oval Office, and they were not scheduled to hold a joint press conference that has typically accompanied foreign leader visits to the White House.

But continued support for Ukraine was likely to be at the top of the agenda for Biden and Scholz. The U.S. and Germany, along with other Group of Seven allies, have for the past year attempted to coordinate on imposing sanctions against Russia to squeeze the Kremlin’s war effort, as well as military and economic assistance for Ukraine.

Biden and Scholz were initially not on the same page earlier this year over whether to send tanks to Ukraine, with Germany reluctant to Leopard tanks unless the U.S. agreed to send Abrams tanks. Both countries eventually came to an agreement to provide the armored vehicles to Ukraine.

As the war enters its second year, maintaining support will be a major test for both leaders, and the U.S. has warned that China is considering providing support to Russia in its war effort, though it has not yet done so.

Polls have shown softening support among Americans for providing additional aid to Ukraine, and U.S. officials have deferred to Ukrainians to map out what they would accept for terms of ending the war. 

Fifty percent of respondents in a late February poll from Fox News said America should continue to back Ukraine through the end of the war, while another 46 percent said there should be a “limited timeframe” on U.S. support.

Source: The Hill

Be First to Comment

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *