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Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is visiting the White House

▶ Watch Video: Biden and Putin hold high-stakes summit in Geneva

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is, finally, getting a visit to the White House. The foreign leader whose conversation with former President Trump sparked the ex-president’s first impeachment inquiry will meet with President Biden at the White House on August 30. 

“President Biden looks forward to welcoming President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine to the White House on August 30, 2021,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement. “The visit will affirm the United States’ unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of Russia’s ongoing aggression in the Donbas and Crimea, our close cooperation on energy security, and our backing for President Zelenskyy’s efforts to tackle corruption and implement a reform agenda based on our shared democratic values.”

Mr. Biden, who has spoken with Zelenskyy since becoming president, has asserted the United States’ “unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of Russia’s ongoing aggression.” A conflict between Russian-backed separatists and Ukraine’s army has been ongoing since 2014. 

CBS News correspondent Holly Williams joined up with the Ukrainian military and Zelenskyy last month in eastern Ukraine, where the war has cost more than 13,000 lives. Zelenskyy warned of Russia’s aggression. Asked why Americans far away should care about what’s happening in Ukraine, Zelenskyy warned that his country’s conflict with Russia, “can be tomorrow in their houses.”

The meeting with Zelenskyy comes after Mr. Biden held a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin last month in Ukraine. Then, Mr. Biden told reporters that Putin “knows I will take action” in working to stop Russia from engaging in malign activities like interfering in U.S. elections, engaging in hacking attacks, like those targeting  SolarWinds and ransomware attacks on U.S. companies. 

Ukraine and Zelenskyy became a focal point in Mr. Trump’s first impeachment inquiry in 2019. That first House impeachment inquiry centered around a July 25, 2019 phone call Mr. Trump held with Zelenskyy in which he urged the Ukrainian leader to investigate Mr. Biden and Hunter Biden. Mr. Trump was impeached by the House along partisan lines, but failed to receive enough votes to be convicted in the Senate. 

Zelenskyy has long made his desire for a White House meeting clear, something that came up in the impeachment inquiry. 


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