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    Poroshenko Seeks Stronger US Support, Asks Congress for US Arms Supplies

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    Situation in the South-East of Ukraine (1121)
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    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Thursday made an emotional appeal to the US Congress in an attempt to convince the US lawmakers that Ukraine is "on the forefront of the fight for democracy" and needs strong support, including supplies of weaponry from the United States.

    Updated 07:40 p.m. Moscow time

    WASHINGTON, September 18 (RIA Novosti) - Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Thursday made an emotional appeal to the US Congress in an attempt to convince the US lawmakers that Ukraine is "on the forefront of the fight for democracy" and needs strong support, including supplies of weaponry from the United States.

    "We cannot win the war with the blankets," Poroshenko said addressing a joint meeting of the House of Representatives and the Senate during his first visit to United States since his inauguration.

    "We need stronger political support throughout the world, and military equipment, both lethal and non-lethal," he said.

    He also reiterated Ukraine's drive for closer ties with NATO in a form of a 'special' security status.

    Poroshenko also called on the United States to be consistent in imposing new sanctions against Russia.

    The Ukrainian leader arrived in Washington on Thursday to meet with US President Barack Obama, US congressmen, and give a speech at the Atlantic Council think-tank. His main goal was to ask for more economic and military aid.

    The United States have already offered over $60 million of non-lethal aid to Ukraine and staged two military exercises on the country's territory.

    On Wednesday, following Poroshenko's visit to Canada, Ottawa offered Ukraine a $200 million loan to help restore its economy and ensure the country's social stability.

    Ukraine is currently on the verge of a default, with the country's authorities trying to rescue its economy with international loans, including a $17 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund, aimed to support Ukraine's struggling economy.

    To receive the IMF funds in full, Ukraine agreed to a severe austerity program that includes shedding 24,000 government jobs, raising taxes, selling off state assets and withdrawing subsidies on natural gas.

    Topic:
    Situation in the South-East of Ukraine (1121)
    Tags:
    NATO, US Army, Petro Poroshenko
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