Blinken visits Ukraine to show US support amid Russian offensive

KYIV, Ukraine — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Kyiv on Tuesday, marking the first visit by a senior U.S. official since Congress approved a $61 billion military aid package for Ukraine last month.

Blinken’s unannounced trip underscores U.S. solidarity with Ukraine as it continues to face intense Russian shelling along its northeastern border.

Arriving by train early Tuesday, Blinken aims to provide a strong reassurance to Ukraine during a challenging time, according to a U.S. official who spoke to reporters on the condition of anonymity.

During his visit, Blinken is set to meet with Ukrainian officials, including President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, to affirm ongoing U.S. support and is expected to deliver a speech focusing on Ukraine’s future prospects.

On the battlefield, Kyiv has been under pressure as Russian forces have gradually advanced, primarily in the Donetsk region to the south. The Russian military holds a significant advantage in both manpower and munitions, capitalizing on Ukraine’s shortages of troops and artillery shells.