Speaking for Ireland? Varadkar pledges support to Ukraine during surprise Kyiv visit – TheLiberal.ie – Our News, Your Views

Speaking for Ireland? Varadkar pledges support to Ukraine during surprise Kyiv visit

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar promised to stand by Ukraine as long as necessary after talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky during a surprise visit to Kyiv, reports RTE.

Me Zelensky held “fruitful” talks with Mr Varadkar, thanking the people of Ireland for their constant help for 87,000 people.

The Taoiseach announced a further €5 million in humanitarian aid as part of its commitment to provide “financial, practical and political” support.

Zelensky said he was “very grateful” that Varadkar went to the site of the Butcher North massacre before their bilateral meeting, saying that the Taoiseach had “seen with his own eyes” the consequences of Russian aggression.

Mr Varadkar praised Zelensky for his “remarkable leadership” over the past two years, adding that, during his visit to Bucha, he came “face-to-face with the horror” of Russian actions, reports RTE.

The Taoiseach said the world must ensure Ukraine’s success in the war against Russia to stop other countries from considering attacking.

Hours before the Taoiseach arrived, emergency sirens sounded in the capital as Ukrainian air defenses intercepted a series of Russian drone strikes on the city.

The site of the Bucha massacre was Mr Varadkar’s first visit under the protection of both the Ukrainian army and Garda’s elite emergency response unit.

The last stop before the meeting with the president was the Romanewski Bridge, where last March Russian forces shot dead Ukrainian civilians trying to escape from Irpin.

The bridge was blown up by the Ukrainian army to prevent further Russian advances and is currently being rebuilt, reports RTE.

Mr. Varadkar was awarded the medal of a Ukrainian soldier who died defending the bridge.

This afternoon, the Taoiseach held talks with the Prime Minister of Ukraine, Denis Shmyhal, and the chairman of the Council, i.e. the parliament, Ruslan Stefanchuk.

He will also meet members of the small Irish community in the Ukrainian capital.

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