On Sunday, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky invited President Joe Biden in a phone call to visit the country soon, which Zelensky said would be "crucial for stabilizing the situation," as tensions escalate with Russia in the region.
"I'm convinced that your arrival in Kyiv in the coming days, which are crucial for stabilizing the situation, will be a powerful signal and contribute to de-escalation," the presidential office quoted Zelensky as telling Biden, according to Reuters.
The call comes amidst skyrocketing tensions between the Ukraine and Russia, as the larger nation has been spotted amassing troops near the Ukrainian border.
It also comes after Biden and the State Department urged Americans late last week to leave Ukraine as soon as possible, noting that military evacuations after a potential Russian invasion may be next to impossible. Meanwhile, the State Department announced Saturday that evacuating Americans fleeing Ukraine may now enter Poland but must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination first.
According to the White House, "President Biden reaffirmed the commitment of the United States to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. President Biden made clear that the United States would respond swiftly and decisively, together with its Allies and partners, to any further Russian aggression against Ukraine."
"The two leaders agreed on the importance of continuing to pursue diplomacy and deterrence in response to Russia's military build-up on Ukraine’s borders," the White House press statement Sunday reads.
According to Reuters, "CNN cited an unnamed Ukrainian official saying there was no positive response from Biden to the idea" regarding a visit to the country.
The Ukrainian readout of the call between the two leaders "had Zelensky saying Ukraine understood the threats it faced and was ready to face any scenario, while thanking the United States for its support," Reuters wrote. "We expect it to among other things help prevent the spread of a mood of panic," he was quoted as saying.