Biden-Zelensky Meeting: US, Ukraine to Continue Seek Accountability for Russia's 'Aggression'
20:37 GMT 01.09.2021 (Updated: 20:38 GMT 01.09.2021)
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The United States has reaffirmed its commitment to Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity and will further help Ukraine in its efforts to hold Russia accountable for its alleged aggression, the countries said in a joint statement on Wednesday.
The statement was made following a meeting between US President Joe Biden and his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, who is currently on a working visit to Washington.
"In the 21st century, nations cannot be allowed to redraw borders by force. Russia violated this ground rule in Ukraine ... The United States stands with Ukraine and will continue to work to hold Russia accountable for its aggression. America’s support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering," the statement read.
1 September 2021, 14:40 GMT
During the meeting, the sides also agreed to deepen defense cooperation and finalized a Strategic Defense Framework that is aimed at boosting the bilateral strategic defense and security cooperation and advancing "shared priorities, including implementing defense and defense industry reforms, deepening cooperation in areas such as Black Sea security, cyber defense, intelligence sharing, and countering Russian aggression."
The United States has sided with Kiev in blaming the conflict in eastern Ukraine on Russia. Russia's relationship with its neighbor and the West deteriorated in 2014 after the forced ouster of President Viktor Yanukovych. Back then, Kiev launched a military operation in its Russian-speaking Donbas region, which considered the power change a coup, while Crimea voted in a referendum to rejoin Russia.
Russia has consistently denied any involvement in the internal Ukrainian conflict and rejected the accusations as unacceptable.