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Austin at Ramstein: US has 'already delivered many of Ukraine's top priority requirements'

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk May 20, 2024 4:07 PM 2 min read
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon on April 12, 2023. Photo for illustrative purposes. (Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal / Telegram)
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U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin delivered the opening remarks at the 22nd Ramstein-format summit of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group (UDCG) on May 20, emphasizing that the new Russian offensive in Kharkiv Oblast has added to the urgency of the West's support for Ukraine.

The summit includes defense ministers and officials from nearly 50 countries to continue coordinating military support for Ukraine.

Austin described the ongoing defense against the Russian offensive in Kharkiv Oblast as a "hard and dangerous fight." He added that it "just underscores the importance" of the summit.

Russia launched a new offensive on May 10 in northern Kharkiv Oblast. According to President Volodymyr Zelensky, Moscow's forces had managed to advance as far as 10 kilometers (6 miles) in the region but had been halted by the first line of defense.

While the specific results of the summit have yet to be announced, Austin said that the U.S. has "already delivered many of Ukraine's top priority requirements, and much more assistance is on the way."

Austin added that "air defense will be high on our agenda today," which will help Ukraine defend Kharkiv Oblast and other places close to the front.

The secretary concluded that "the weeks and months again are crucial" and urged Ukraine's Western allies to increase their support.

Zelensky: ‘Our partners fear that Russia will lose this war’
President Volodymyr Zelensky believes that Ukraine’s partners “are afraid of Russia losing the war” and would like Kyiv “to win in such a way that Russia does not lose,” Zelensky said in a meeting with journalists attended by the Kyiv Independent.
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