Russian Attack in Kharkiv Region Kills Over 50, Ukraine Says: Live Updates

President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine arrived in Spain on Thursday to participate in a European summit aimed at strengthening cooperation across the continent as concern rises about waning support for his country as it faces another winter of Russian aggression.

The Ukrainian leader’s trip to the southern Spanish city of Granada came a day after President Biden expressed worries that the recent political turmoil in Congress could disrupt the flow of U.S. aid to Ukraine.

Asked if he was concerned about a possible scaling back of U.S. military aid, Mr. Zelensky it was “too late for us to worry.”

In his speech at the summit meeting, he said that he predicted the United States would continue to support Ukraine’s war efforts, noting that meetings with Mr. Biden and with Congress members last month were positive.

“I am confident in America,” he said in his speech at the conference. “Confident. They are strong people, strong society, with strong institutions, strong energy of democracy. I was recently in Washington. I talked to President Biden. I talked to congressmen from both parties, both chambers. They fully support the defense of freedom and understand that it is Russia and other enemies to our way of life who want to ride such political storms.”

But Mr. Zelensky acknowledged that several candidates in next year’s U.S. presidential elections have held “very strange” positions on Ukraine, an apparent reference to Republican candidates who have voiced their disagreement with continuing to send the war-torn country military aid.

Mr. Zelensky earlier had said that the “joint goal” of those gathering in Granada was “to ensure the security and stability of our common European home.”

E.U. leaders are expected to discuss long-term financial aid for Ukraine at a summit planned later this month in Brussels — but the topic might come up at the meeting in Spain as well, diplomats said.

On Thursday, Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, told reporters in Granada that what Ukraine needed was “predictability and reliability” on direct budget support.

“I’m very confident of support for Ukraine from the United States,” she said. “What the United States is working on is the timing.”

But Josep Borrell Fontelles, the top E.U. diplomat, told reporters before the summit that the events in the U.S. were “not expected” and “not good news.”

“Ukraine needs the support of the European Union,” he said. “But also the support of the U.S.”

Mr. Borrell added: “Certainly, Europe cannot replace the U.S.”

Thursday’s meeting in Granada comes amid concerns about potential cracks in Europe’s united front on Ukraine, as governmentsreckon with the economic and political costs of providing long-term support for Kyiv.

It is just the third meeting of the European Political Community, a pan-continental gathering of leaders from nearly 50 countries that was created after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine began in February 2022. Larger than the 27-nation European Union, it includes countries like Ukraine and Moldova that are impatient with the long process of securing E.U. membership. It is not a decision-making body, but rather a forum for leaders to exchange views.

Last year at the summit, Mr. Zelensky pushed for Ukraine to gain membership in the European Union and NATO.

The European Union gave Ukraine a path to membership last year. But joining is a long and painstaking process, which usually takes several years, even for nations that are not at war. The E.U. is expected to decide in December whether to open negotiations with Ukraine, the next step in the process and one which would require the unanimous backing of all 27 member states.