US President Joe Biden spoke by phone with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky on Monday, whom he will host at the White House next summer, announced national security adviser Jake Sullivan.

Biden spoke with Zelenksy before embarking on his first international trip in office, which will take him to Europe to, among other things, meet on June 16 in Geneva with his Russian colleague, Vladimir Putin.

Sullivan explained at a press conference at the presidential mansion that Biden conveyed to Zelensky that “he will firmly defend Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and aspirations.”

He added that during the call they discussed “all significant aspects of the relationship, including the United States’ support for Ukraine’s security.”

On his first trip outside the United States since taking office in January, Biden will go to Cornwall, United Kingdom, Brussels, Belgium, and Geneva, Switzerland from June 9-17.

Sullivan indicated that Biden will attend his meeting with Putin after almost a week of “intense consultations with the allies and democratic partners” of the United States, since in Cornwall he will participate in the G7 meeting; while in Brussels he plans to attend the NATO summit, and another between the United States and the European Union.

Therefore, Biden will go to meet Putin “with the wind blowing in his favor,” Sullivan stressed.

The president of the United States “is not going to meet with Vladimir Putin, despite the differences between our countries, but he is going to meet with him due to the differences between countries,” said the national security adviser, who emphasized that there is a lot of work ahead.

Sullivan stressed that the Russian president has “a very personalistic decision-making style,” so he considered it important for Biden to sit with him face to face to try to resolve the differences between the two powers.

The meeting with Putin will be the first meeting between the two since Biden came to power, and aims to lower the temperature in a relationship marked by disagreements over Ukraine’s sovereignty, and the wave of cyberattacks allegedly launched from Russia.

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