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Biden Traveling to Europe for NATO Meeting

President Biden will attend a unprecedented NATO summit assembly in Brussels on March 24 and also will attend the European Union’s summit assembly the identical day, White Home and European officers mentioned on Tuesday.

President Biden will journey to Brussels subsequent week to attend the high-stakes gathering to debate ongoing deterrence and protection efforts in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir V. Putin intensified his bombardment of civilian targets as his unprovoked invasion of the nation entered its third week.

“His objective is to fulfill nose to nose together with his European counterparts and discuss the place we’re at this level within the battle, within the invasion of Ukraine by Russia,’’ the White Home press secretary, Jen Psaki, mentioned at a briefing on Tuesday afternoon. “We’ve been extremely aligned to this point. That doesn’t occur by chance.”

The journey comes as Mr. Biden, who helped to coordinate a speedy Western response to the invasion centered on highly effective sanctions and elevated army help, faces intense strain to take extra direct motion to cease the killing of Ukrainian civilians. Stop-fire talks between the combatants have up to now yielded no outcomes.

Ms. Psaki supplied few particulars of Mr. Biden’s journey and declined to say if he deliberate to fulfill with Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, whom he has praised as a hero. She additionally wouldn’t say whether or not Mr. Biden or different U.S. officers would meet with refugees who’ve fled the preventing.

“We’re nonetheless finalizing the journey right now,” mentioned Ms. Psaki, including, “Nothing on the desk at this cut-off date, however the actual focus proper now’s to fulfill with NATO companions in Brussels.”

The announcement of Mr. Biden’s journey comes after Vice President Kamala Harris visited Poland and Romania, NATO allies alongside Ukraine’s western borders, final week to specific assist for Ukraine and counsel that Moscow would possibly should be held accountable for doable struggle crimes within the battle. Mr. Zelensky is anticipated to request better financial and army help when he delivers a digital handle to Congress on Wednesday.

Mr. Biden will be a part of 30 NATO leaders on the particular, swiftly organized assembly, then plans to attend a beforehand scheduled European Council summit. Twenty-one of the European Union’s 27 members belong to NATO, and it’s doable that shut NATO allies like Sweden and Finland may also attend the assembly.

Administration officers mentioned that the White Home was exploring whether or not Mr. Biden would possibly proceed his journey to Jap Europe, to fulfill a few of the refugees flowing in a foreign country.

Mr. Biden additionally plans to announce extra assist for Ukraine’s protection, Ms. Psaki mentioned.

“We’re on Day 19,” Ms. Psaki famous of the Russian invasion.

“Along with their unbelievable braveness and bravado,’’ she mentioned of the Ukrainians, “{one of the} causes that they’re able to maintain again and push again towards the Russian army is due to the numerous quantity of army help now we have supplied.”

Mr. Biden, officers say, needs to go to Europe to make the case that he’s succeeding at unifying NATO and different European allies. However European diplomats, involved that there are not any fast main choices on the desk, are working to give you a serious announcement or initiative that would come up from the extraordinary assembly of the Western alliance.

Mr. Biden’s objective,” Ms. Psaki mentioned, “is to fulfill nose to nose together with his European counterparts and discuss the place we’re at this level within the battle, within the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.”

Ms. Psaki shrugged off Russia’s announcement on Tuesday that it will impose reciprocal sanctions on prime U.S. officers, together with herself and President Biden. She suggesting, jokingly, that the Kremlin’s announcement may need missed its supposed mark. The president, Ms. Psaki mentioned, is a “junior, so they could have sanctioned his dad by mistake.”

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