Biden pledges $225m in fresh aid for Ukraine at Paris talks with Zelensky

US President Joe Biden has announced another $225 million in aid for Ukraine as he held talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky in Paris. The US leader also apologised over a months-long congressional hold-up in military assistance that let Russia make gains on the battlefield.

Biden met with Zelensky on Friday after appealling for bipartisan US support to go forward “like it was during World War II.”

The leaders on Thursday attended ceremonies marking the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy, where Biden had drawn common cause between the Allied forces that helped free Europe from Nazi Germany and today's effort to support Ukraine against Russia's invasion.

Referring to the six-month holdup by conservative Republicans in Congress to a $61 billion military aid package for Ukraine, Biden said: “I apologise for those weeks of not knowing what’s going to happen in terms of funding".

Still, the Democratic president insisted that the American people were standing by Ukraine for the long haul.

“We’re still in. Completely. Thoroughly,” he said.

The apology – and Zelensky’s plea for rock-solid support akin to the allied coalition in WWII – served as a reminder that for all of Biden’s talk of an unflagging US commitment to Ukraine, recalcitrance among congressional Republicans and an isolationist strain in American politics have exposed its fragility.

Earlier, Zelensky addressed the French parliament, declaring that Europe was "no longer a continent of peace".

(with newswires)


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