US President Joe Biden is heading to Poland for a two-day visit to mark the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, returning to the region as the war enters a volatile new phase without a clear path to peace.
Biden will arrive in Warsaw on Tuesday where he will meet with Polish President Andrzej Duda, the White House said in a statement Sunday.
“The President will deliver remarks ahead of the one year anniversary of Russia’s brutal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, addressing how the United States has rallied the world to support the people of Ukraine as they defend their freedom and democracy, and how we will continue to stand with the people of Ukraine for as long as it takes,” the statement said.
One year ago, Biden was urgently warning a sometimes-skeptical world that a massive buildup of Russian troops along Ukraine’s borders was the precursor to war. At the time, even some inside his own government questioned the ability of the Ukrainians to withstand an invasion, predicting the imminent fall of the capital Kyiv.
Instead, Ukrainian fighters have held the capital and continue to resist Russian attempts to control territory, helped by a massive influx of Western weapons, ammunition and equipment. The war has become a grinding conflict that US officials say could last for months or even years.
It has come to shape Biden’s foreign policy, the fallout reverberating in the global economy and leading to newfound unity between the United States and its European allies.
Biden’s aides have been planning for several weeks how they will mark the anniversary of the invasion, including potentially a major address. They hope to emphasize the resilience of the Ukrainian people while stressing the importance of unity in the uncertain months ahead.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is currently preparing for an expected Russian offensive in the spring, appealing to Western governments for additional assistance and weaponry to help sustain the fight.