Volodymyr Zelensky has arrived in Brussels for a day of meetings with EU leaders and lawmakers, a European Parliament official has confirmed.
The visit marked the third stop on the Ukrainian president’s two-day tour through European capitals. On Wednesday, he made a surprise visit to London, where he called for the UK to donate fighter jets before heading to Paris for dinner with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
In Brussels, Zelensky is expected to chat with EU leaders gathered for a European Council summit, as well as address the European Parliament — a dramatic moment to illustrate the EU’s unity with Ukraine as it prepares for an expected Russian attack.
“It will be a strong sign [Zelenskyy] will be at the summit,” Scholz said Wednesday night while speaking with Zelensky and Macron. “It is a sign of solidarity. Ukrainians are part of the European family.”
While the US and UK are Ukraine’s biggest private military backers, EU countries have collectively pledged billions in financial aid and weapons to Kiev.
More recently, several European countries joined an alliance to send more than 100 modern tanks to Ukraine – a key request by Kiev in preparation for a new Russian offensive. A number have finally expressed openness to offering Ukraine modern fighter jets.
Zelensky is campaigning to speed up Ukraine’s bid to join the EU – a process that could last a decade or more. Ukrainian officials have even pushed for a two-year process, a timeline many EU officials consider unrealistic.