Ukraine Crisis: President Poroshenko Seeks US Support

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has appealed to US to provide military assistance to his country to counter pro-Russian eastern separatists.

Poroshenko addressing a joint session of Congress, said ill-equipped young Ukrainian servicemen were fighting a “war for the free world” against Russian aggression.

US President Barack Obama has condemned Russia’s actions in Ukraine, adding that military support will only include non-lethal equipment.

Poroshenko told the Congress in Washington that Ukrainian government forces needed more equipment – both lethal and non-lethal.

“Blankets, night-vision goggles are important, but one cannot win the war with blankets.”

His impassioned plea for US support brought applause and several standing ovations.

But the BBC’s Jane O’Brien in Washington says it’s unlikely he’ll get much more than that, even though he framed the Ukrainian crisis as a threat to global security and democracy.

The Associated Press news agency quotes senior US administration officials as saying that President Obama will announce $46m (£28.1m) in new security assistance for the Ukrainian military when he meets Poroshenko later, but will stop short of providing lethal aid.

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