White House gave Russia advanced notice of Biden’s ‘surprise’ Ukraine visit, cites ‘deconfliction purposes’

The White House gave Russian officials “some hours” of advanced warning that President Joe Biden would be visiting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Kyiv to mark the upcoming one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion.

The heads-up was an effort to avoid escalating tensions with Moscow, The Hill reports.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan confirmed the notification to reporters on Monday.

“We did notify the Russians that President Biden would be traveling to Kyiv,” Sullivan said. “We did so some hours before his departure for deconfliction purposes.”

As American Wire News reported, Biden made an unannounced stop in Ukraine’s capital to reaffirm the United States’ “unwavering and unflagging” support for the war-torn nation.

“As the world prepares to mark the one-year anniversary of Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine, I am in Kyiv today to meet with President Zelenskyy and reaffirm our unwavering and unflagging commitment to Ukraine’s democracy, sovereignty, and territorial integrity,” Biden said in an official statement.

“Today, in Kyiv, I am meeting with President Zelenskyy and his team for an extended discussion on our support for Ukraine. I will announce another delivery of critical equipment, including artillery ammunition, anti-armor systems, and air surveillance radars to help protect the Ukrainian people from aerial bombardments,” the statement continued. “And I will share that later this week, we will announce additional sanctions against elites and companies that are trying to evade or backfill Russia’s war machine.”

Sullivan called the trip “historic,” but did not comment on Moscow’s response.

“This was a historic visit, unprecedented in modern times, to have the president United States visit the capital of the country of war, where the United States military does not control the critical infrastructure,” he told reporters.

According to James Hohmann of The Washington Post, Sullivan stated that Biden wanted to make the trip to Kyiv to send a “clear message” of support.

“Jake Sullivan says Biden really wanted to go ‘to send a clear, unmistakable message of enduring American support,'” Hohmann reported on Twitter. “He felt that risk had been brought to a manageable level. The trip was not a celebration but an affirmation that the US will support Ukraine as long as it takes.”

“Over the last year, the United States has built a coalition of nations from the Atlantic to the Pacific to help defend Ukraine with unprecedented military, economic, and humanitarian support – and that support will endure,” Biden’s statement read.

According to Anton Gerashchenko, advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, “Russian propagandists” are claiming Moscow helped to make Biden’s visit happen.

“Turns out, it was Russia that allowed and even helped Biden arrive to Kyiv,” Gerashchenko quipped, posting a subtitled video of “Russian propagandists” discussing his visit.

“Has someone given a security guarantee?” asked one of the panel.

“I think someone gave guarantees and I’m pretty sure someone did,” another said.

“Did we?” the co-host asked.

“We did,” the other responded.

When asked why, the Russian claimed, “You know, we could have destroyed Biden, but that would have been completely…”

“So, destroying Biden is too much,” the first said, “but threatening [Russian President Vladimir] Putin is okay, blowing up the Nord Stream is okay, too?”

The “propagandist” gave a “logical” response.

“So, if we destroy Biden, who will replace him?” he asked. “Kamala Harris?”

“Biden, in spite of all his dementia, at least has his senses and some restraints,” he said, “whereas she has no restraints at all. That’s what [Secretary of State Antony] Blinken and Sullivan tell her, that’s what she’ll do. She has absolutely no opinion of her own.”

“The only thing is,” he continued, “I think [Biden] should fly in a helicopter, as he usually does, and have our planes escort him to Kyiv. It certainly would have been more impressive.”


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