June 4, 2021

UCCA pens letter to President Biden urging contact with Zelenskyy prior to upcoming summits


WASHINGTON – As President Joseph Biden prepares for the upcoming G-7 and NATO summits with U.S. allies and European partners, as well as a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) penned a letter to Mr. Biden outlining the concerns of the Ukrainian American community.

“The stakes for the United States, and the larger democratic world writ large, could not be higher,” UCCA President Andriy Futey and Executive Vice President Michael Sawkiw, Jr., wrote in their letter to Mr. Biden.

“Russia’s efforts to destabilize Ukraine through its invasion of eastern Ukraine, its continued illegal occupation of Crimea – sovereign Ukrainian territory, and its interference in democratic processes in the United States and elsewhere threaten the peace, international order and security of democratic nations,” the authors wrote.

The letter was delivered electronically to the White House and it called on Mr. Biden to invite Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskyy to meet prior to either of the ally summits or prior to the president’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva.

“It would be the UCCA’s earnest hope,” the authors said in their letter, “that you, Mr. president, invite Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy to meet with you at the G-7 or NATO summits, or [that you hold] a one-on-one engagement prior to your meeting with Vladimir Putin.”

Inasmuch as Ukraine will likely be a topic of major discussion, the UCCA in their letter requested that Mr. Biden “support publicly Ukraine’s efforts towards Euro-Atlantic integration and to state unequivocally that the people of Ukraine will determine their destiny with regard to national policy, including their closer interaction with Europe and NATO.”

In previous correspondence with the White House and administration officials, the UCCA requested to meet with Mr. Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken to discuss matters of concern regarding Ukraine. A meeting with then-Vice President Biden and representatives of the Ukrainian community was held in February 2014 during the height of the Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine.