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Harris, Zelenskyy join world leaders to discuss peace plan in Ukraine

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(SWITZERLAND) — Vice President Kamala Harris and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke warmly about the recent Ukrainian-American security agreement before a bilateral meeting at the Summit on Peace in Ukraine on Saturday in Switzerland.

Zelenskyy said that Ukrainian “teams have started to implement” the U.S.-Ukraine bilateral security agreement that was recently signed in Italy.

“Putin is trying to expand the war and make it more bloody,” Zelenskyy said. “But together with America, and other partners, we protect the lives of people and open up new opportunities for diplomacy.”

He added that the goal of the summit is diplomacy, which Ukraine has always believed in, adding that the war is not their choice.

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Harris noted Russia’s increased aggression, “including opening a new front outside of Kharkiv relentlessly attacking Ukraine’s energy system.”

“It is in our interest to uphold international rules and norms such as sovereignty and territorial integrity, and your national system we helped create following World War II, which bolsters America’s security and prosperity,” Harris said.

Harris also pointed to the recent U.S. efforts to help Ukraine, including the $60 billion in funding and the delivery of more weapons to help soldiers on the front lines.

The vice president also announced another $1.5 billion from USAID that will help repair Ukrainian infrastructure and humanitarian needs.

Zelenskyy said that the presence of the nations attending the summit proves that the world is standing by the UN Charter and declares that “no one has the right to wage a war of aggression against a neighbor.”

“No one had the right to threaten the world with nuclear weapons. No one had the right to undermine food, energy or any other security of the war and its regions no one had the right to kidnap the children of another nation,” he said.

Zelenskyy laid out the three points that are of global focus that will be key to the peace formula: radiation and nuclear safety, food security and the release of prisoners and deportees.

“The peace formula encourages all the powers of the world to think about ending the war and to propose how to end it,” Zelenskyy said. “Putin should switch from the language of ultimatums to the language of the world majority, which wants a just peace.”

Ursula van der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, also talked about how the effects of the war have spread across the globe.

“We’re here today to help bring an end to a brutal and unjust war. A conflict that has shattered lives and displaced millions. The echoes of Russia’s war of aggression reverberate across the globe. Energy prices have soared, food prices have exploded,” von der Leyen said. “And it is a cautionary tale for the entire world.”

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