Western leaders reaffirm their support for Ukraine in Kyiv on anniversary of war – Global leaders

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On the second anniversary of Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine, the prime ministers of Italy and Canada signed security deals with Ukraine as a show of support. Despite initial successes in pushing back the Russian army, Ukraine has faced recent setbacks, with shortages of arms and soldiers becoming a growing concern.

To reaffirm their commitment to Ukraine, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, along with other European leaders, visited Kyiv. They signed defense pacts and pledged financial and military support to Ukraine. Ordinary Ukrainians marked the anniversary with services to honor the fallen and expressed fears that the war could continue for several more years. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy accompanied the foreign leaders to Hostomel airport, the site of a key battle during the invasion.

Meanwhile, the war outside Kyiv continued, with Russian attacks hitting civilian areas in Odesa and Dnipro. Despite ongoing conflicts, the United States’ promised aid of $61bn is being blocked by Republicans in Congress. As the war enters its third year, Ukraine’s army faces vulnerabilities in the face of a larger and better-supplied Russian military.

President Zelenskiy has warned that Putin may not stop at Ukraine’s borders if victorious, but Putin dismisses these claims as part of a wider struggle with the United States. Anniversary events across Ukraine, including in the western city of Lviv, served as somber reminders of the ongoing conflict.

As Ukraine grapples with the economic and humanitarian impact of the war, rebuilding efforts could cost nearly $500bn. With millions of housing units destroyed and millions of people displaced, Zelenskiy faces the challenge of mobilizing more troops without paralyzing the economy. Despite facing economic challenges, Russia has remained resilient to sanctions, with defense spending propping up the economy.

As the war drags on, both Ukraine and Russia remain locked in a brutal conflict with no clear end in sight. Zelenskiy remains resolute in his belief in victory, while Putin’s authoritarian rule continues to stifle dissent both domestically and abroad.

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