President Zelenskyy returned from Washington with a pledge for increased military and financial support, aid Russia says will only prolong the fighting.
Touching down after his military flight from the USA, Volodymyr Zelenskyy met his ally, Polish President Andrzej Duda. It was a chance to thank Poland for its military and humanitarian support.
But on his first reported journey away from his homeland, the Ukrainian president also recorded his daily address for his people, updating them on his visit to America.
He said: "We are coming back from Washington with good results. With something that will really help. When we say 'Patriots' in Ukraine and in the United States, we equally mean the protection of the state and people. This issue has been resolved for Ukraine. There is also financial support. There are other agreements - we will talk about them later.”
Russia responded to Zelenskyy’s diplomatic mission with a choreographed Vladimir Putin press briefing in Moscow and the release of a video purportedly showing defence minister Sergei Shoigu visiting the front lines.
President Putin poured scorn on America’s Patriot missile system, following Washington’s pledge to supply a battery to Ukraine.
He said: “It's a pretty old system, and it doesn't work like, say, our S-300. Well, nevertheless. I mean, those who oppose us are proceeding on the assumption that it's supposedly a defensive weapon.”
Putin said supplying Ukraine with new weapons would simply prolong the fighting. His defence minister’s visit to the front was designed to show that Russian soldiers are well prepared for a long winter of war ahead.