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Ukraine leader calls for air defense while meeting with G7

Germany G7 Summit
Posted at 8:44 AM, Jun 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-27 15:04:37-04

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed the leaders of the G7 on Monday, calling on them to help bolster his nation's air defense capabilities.

Following Monday’s meeting, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters the U.S. plans to include new air defense systems in its next aid package. The call came after a Russian missile struck a residential area in Kyiv on Sunday.

"I can confirm that we are in fact, in the process of finalizing a package that includes advanced air defense capabilities," he said. "As [Biden] told President Zelenskyy, we do intend to finalize a package that includes advanced medium and long-range air defense capabilities for the Ukrainians, along with some other items that are of urgent need, including ammunition for artillery and counter-battery radar systems."

While the leaders of the world’s largest economies met in person in Germany, Zelenskyy met with the group through a video chat. The call came as Russia has made significant gains in eastern Ukraine.

Zelenskyy remains in Ukraine as the war goes into its fifth month.

“[Zelenskyy] believes that a grinding conflict is not in the interest of the Ukrainian people for obvious reasons,” Sullivan said. “So he would like to see his military and those in the West who are supporting his military and making maximum use of the next few months to put Ukraine in as good a position as they can possibly be in."

While the G7 nations are dealing with rapid inflation due partly to surging oil prices, the leaders are attempting to put a price cap on Russian oil.

"The single biggest factor here is this is not something that can be pulled off the shelf as a tried and true method,” Sullivan said. “It is a new kind of concept to deal with a particularly novel challenge, which is how to effectively deal with a country that's selling millions of barrels of oil a day."