Top Ukraine, U.S. defense officials discussed military aid in call, Kyiv says
Three senior U.S. security officials held a video call with a group of their Ukrainian counterparts to discuss military aid to Kyiv, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s chief of staff said on Saturday.
“We discussed the further provision of necessary assistance to our country, in particular vehicles, weapons and ammunition,” Andriy Yermak wrote on Telegram.
Yermak said he, Ukraine’s Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov, top general Valeriy Zaluzhnyi, and several other senior commanders and officials had attended the meeting.
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, top military commander Mark Milley, and the White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan represented the other side.
Yermak did not give details of specific requests to the U.S. side.
The meeting took place as Kyiv seeks to gather sufficient supplies of arms from its Western backers, of which the U.S. has been the most significant, to mount a counter-offensive and try to take back territory captured by Moscow last year.
Yermak added that Zelenskyy had joined the meeting at the end to give his views on the liberation of Ukrainian territories occupied by Russia since its invasion nearly 13 months ago.
“We briefed our allies in detail about the current situation at the front, combat operations in the most difficult areas, as well as the urgent needs of the Ukrainian army,” Yermak said.
Ukrainian forces continued on Friday to withstand Russian assaults on the ruined city of Bakhmut, the focal point for eight months of Russian attempts to advance through the industrial Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine bordering Russia.