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German Defense Minister Pledges Support for Ukraine



An official from another key Western ally paid a surprise visit to Ukraine Tuesday while Russian forces continued to pound civilian infrastructure with missiles and drones.

German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius arrived in Kyiv a day after a visit by U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

Both men said their nations would help Ukraine during what is expected to be a long, cold, uncertain winter.

Germany is the second-biggest supplier of military assistance to Kyiv, behind the United States.

Pistorius’ second visit to Ukraine came during a commemoration of the country’s November 2013 pro-democracy uprising.

“I am here again, firstly to pledge further support, but also to express our solidarity and deep bond and also our admiration for the courageous, brave and costly fight that is being waged here,” Pistorius said, laying flowers at Maidan square in central Kyiv.

In his address Tuesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy linked the 2013 demonstrations, which continued for months, to the war with Russia today.

“Ten years ago, people united not only against something, but above all for themselves. Everyone for everyone. All those who after the arbitrariness of force felt that they are also being beaten, that they are also hurt, that these are blows to justice and truth, to freedom, to our common tomorrow.

“What will it be like if we remain silent, swallow it, and fear instead of fighting?” he said. “And then, in fact, the first victory in today’s war took place. The victory of non-indifference. The victory of courage. The victory of the Revolution of Dignity.”

Meanwhile, heavy Russian drone and missile attacks continued, damaging a hospital, a building at a mine and other civilian infrastructure.

“The central city hospital in the town of Selydove in the Donetsk region, the building of the Kotlyarevska mine and other civilian infrastructure were destroyed and damaged,” the Ukrainian military said in a statement.

In his visit Monday, Austin said the Pentagon would be sending an additional $100 million in weapons to Ukraine, including artillery and munitions for air defense systems.

He said Ukraine’s effort to defeat Russian forces “matters to the rest of the world” and that U.S. support would continue “for the long haul.”

Source : VOANews

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