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Harris vows US will support Ukraine ‘as long as it takes’

During a speech at the Munich Security Conference, Vice President Kamala Harris vowed that the United States would help Ukraine in its war against Russia for “as long as it takes” as fighting in the region continues and nears its second anniversary.

“So, as we move forward, the President and I […] will continue to work to secure the resources and weapons that you need to succeed. We will also continue to support your efforts to secure a just and lasting peace,” Harris said, addressing Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“We will work to make sure Russia pays damages to Ukraine and ultimately, we want to see Ukraine emerge from this war as a nation that is free, democratic and independent,” she continued. “President Zelensky, as President Joe Biden and I have made clear, we will be with you for as long as it takes.”

Harris’s comments reaffirm the United States’ support of Zelensky and Ukraine in its war against Russia. The Ukrainian leader also spoke at the conference, where he repeated his plea for additional international aid to continue the war.

He emphasized that the strength of Ukraine’s troops is hindered by low ammunition supplies and a shortage of personnel.

Ukraine withdrew troops from the eastern city of Avdiivka this week because the military was concerned about the lives and safety of its soldiers. Zelensky said his troops needed help with artillery and long-range capabilities.

“We’re just waiting for weapons that we’re short of,” he said.

His requests for support continue as a $60 billion aid package that’s been in the works in Congress for months remains stalled. The Senate passed a foreign aid package this week after a series of hiccups but remains stuck in the House.

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has said he does not approve of the aid package because it lacks the tougher security measures for the U.S.-Mexico border that House Republicans demand. The combined border and foreign aid package failed in the Senate after GOP members tanked the bill after insisting for months that any aid to Ukraine must also be tied with border funding.

The House is in recess and Johnson received criticism from the White House for leaving town without bringing the Ukraine aid to the floor for a vote.

The White House announced Saturday that President Biden called Zelensky to reaffirm the country’s commitment to supporting him in the war ahead of the second anniversary.

“President Biden emphasized the need for Congress to urgently pass the national security supplemental funding bill to resupply Ukrainian forces,” the White House said in a statement.

Updated at 3:38 pm EST.

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