The visit came as part of a bipartisan Congressional Delegation (CODEL) to Ukraine
Russia continues its saber-rattling along the Ukrainian border, raising tensions among much of the world. The BBC reported that nearly 100,000 Russian troops have amassed at the Ukrainian border despite warnings from President Joe Biden and European leaders of serious consequences should Putin move ahead with an invasion.
On Monday, Mississippi U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R) joined other U.S. Senators for a meeting in Ukraine with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The other Senators attending the meeting were Rob Portman (R-OH), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT).
The visit came as part of a bipartisan Congressional Delegation (CODEL) to Ukraine. The Senators expressed their deep concern over the buildup of Russian forces in and around Ukraine.
The lawmakers pledged to continue to back funding and material support for Ukraine’s defense in the U.S. Senate.
Increased funding for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative recently passed Congress as part of the FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
“Ukraine is a vital U.S. partner who is standing resolute in the face of Vladimir Putin’s shameful and illegal aggression,” Senator Wicker said in a release. “I appreciated the opportunity to meet with President Zelenskyy to express our strong and united support for Ukraine. It is imperative that the United States stay strong in the face of Russian aggression and stand by our friends who are fighting for freedom.”
In a floor speech in December, Senator Wicker condemned the Russian President Vladimir Putin’s growing military presence on the Ukrainian border. Wicker had said that there would be severe consequences if Russia continues its malign behavior.
“I stand today in support of the freedom loving people of Ukraine, our friends and our allies in Europe, and in warning to my fellow Americans and to my colleagues about a threat coming from Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime,” said Senator Wicker. “Now is the time—and I know many of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle agree with this—now is the time for the President of the United States to send a strong signal to Vladimir Putin and his oligarchs – his ruling inner circle – that there will be serious consequences.”
Wicker continued in his floor speech urging the United States to stand strong against Putin’s aggressions toward Ukraine.
“I don’t want a war with Ukraine, Madam President, and neither do my colleagues, and neither does the President of the United States,” Wicker said on the Senate floor. “The clearest way to prevent an invasion of our friends in Ukraine is for the United States to stand strong, to be resolute, to send a signal to the world that Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine will not be tolerated, and that intolerable consequences will be meted out upon the Putin regime.”