U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) announced that he has left Ukraine with Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) after a bipartisan congressional delegation trip to encourage Ukraine‘s victory against Russia’s brutal and unjust invasion and coordinate about legal accountability for Russia’s war crimes. Traveling to the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv yesterday, the delegation met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal and held a press conference where they reiterated their unwavering support for Ukraine and its people.
“We are keenly aware that in the last year, Ukrainian families have experienced a lot of suffering and many mourn loved ones. But in the manner in which you’ve conducted yourself in this conflict, you have set a high standard for the rest of humanity. Watching Ukraine makes me proud to be a human being,” said Whitehouse at yesterday’s press conference.
“We intend to be with you until the end, which is victory,” said Whitehouse.
The delegation also met with Ukrainian Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin to discuss ways the United States can support ongoing efforts to hold Russian war criminals accountable.
“We’re going to go back to Washington and continue to raise the pressure on accountability – to the International Criminal Court, to whatever international tribunal may be established, and to courts of law – for the inhumane conduct not only by Putin, not only by the Wagner Group, but right down to the officers and brutal soldiers who’ve committed war crimes,” pledged Whitehouse yesterday.
Whitehouse, Graham, and Blumenthal have championed U.S. support for Ukraine from the start of Russia’s invasion. Shortly after the Russian invasion in February, Whitehouse and Graham engaged in a colloquy on the Senate floor focused on the need for the U.S. and its allies to recognize that Ukrainian victory was possible. In May, Whitehouse, Graham, and Blumenthal took to the Senate floor in support of a nearly $100 million funding measure to disrupt illicit Russian financing by Putin and his oligarchs. And last month, Whitehouse, Graham, and Blumenthal passed bipartisan legislation to transfer the proceeds from recovered Russian oligarch assets to aid the reconstruction of Ukraine – without appropriating any additional taxpayer dollars.
Whitehouse and Graham are also the co-leads of the annual congressional delegation to the Munich Security Conference, where support for congressional efforts to hold Putin and his corrupt oligarchs accountable for their brutal war was first forged.
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