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Zelensky asserts that House passing foreign aid package shows Ukraine won’t be the ‘second Afghanistan’

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the House of Representatives for passing a foreign aid bill supporting the country’s war effort against Russia and argued it shows the country will not face the same fate as Afghanistan.

The U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan after 20 years in 2021 led to the country being overrun by the Taliban. Zelensky and Ukraine are currently attempting to thwart Russia’s attempt to overtake the European country in a war that began in 2022. Zelensky joined NBC News’s Meet the Press on Sunday to express his gratitude for the foreign aid bill, which is almost certain to pass the Senate.

“First of all I would like to say thanks to Congress and I’d like to say thanks to [House] Speaker [Mike] Johnson and President [Joe] Biden, indeed, it is so important — the support from the United States of America. And, of course, the support of the American people is because, of course, the political decisions depend on the public opinion,” Zelensky said.

“This aid will strengthen Ukraine and send us the permanent — powerful signal that it will not be the second Afghanistan. The United States will stay with Ukraine, will protect the Ukrainians, and they will protect democracy in the world. This is a show of leadership and strength of the United States,” he added.

He also discussed how he wants to see the aid package passed by the Senate as quickly as possible so that assistance can be given to the front lines.

“We really need to get this to the final point, we need to get approved by the Senate,” Zelensky said. “Then we want to get things as fast as possible, so that we get some tangible assistance for the soldiers on the front line as soon as possible, not in another six months, so that they would be able to move ahead.”

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Aid to Ukraine for its war against Russia has been a sticking point for several hard-right Republicans in the House of Representatives, leading to it being held up for several months. The aid bill to Ukraine passed 311-112 on Saturday, alongside separate aid bills to Israel and the Indo-Pacific, with more Republicans voting against the Ukraine legislation than voting for it. It is widely expected the Senate will pass the bill and Biden will sign it into law.

The war in Ukraine has been raging since February 2022, when Russia invaded the country, and has largely seen little movement in battle lines in the more than two years of fighting. Some officials, including CIA Director Bill Burns, have warned that without U.S. aid to Ukraine, Russia could win the win by the end of the year.

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