Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky recently defended former President Donald Trump for not fully supporting Ukraine in the war.
In an interview with Italian media outlet Corriere della Sera, Zelensky noted that the invasion did not happen under Trump’s term, making it impossible to know how he would respond.
“Biden is helping us more than the previous administration. However, I cannot blame Trump, because there was no full-scale invasion during his presidency and so I don’t know how he would have responded,” Zelensky said in the interview.
“Regarding the U.S. support for Ukraine, we have bilateral support so far, and it’s ongoing. We have the full support of the U.S. Congress. Though if the political atmosphere becomes more charged, this may change. We’ll see.”
Trump has made a number of comments about the war in the past. In February, Trump described Russian President Vladimir Putin‘s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine as “genius” and “savvy.”
“I went in yesterday and there was a television screen, and I said, ‘This is genius.’ Putin declares a big portion of the Ukraine — of Ukraine — Putin declares it as independent. Oh, that’s wonderful,” Trump said on “The Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show.”
On March 2, Trump switched his tone and condemned the invasion, calling it “a holocaust” and urging Moscow to “stop killing these people” during an interview with Fox Business’s Maria Bartiromo. Trump added that a deal could be worked out by both parties to end the conflict.
A few days later, Trump appeared in an interview on Fox News’ “Hannity” where he doubled down on his criticism of the invasion and blamed Putin’s “very big ego” for the war.
The conflict between Russia and Ukraine is now entering its ninth month. In recent months, Ukrainian troops have successfully retaken and liberated several settlements in occupied Russian territories.
As of Thursday, Ukrainian forces are holding out against repeated attacks in two eastern towns, namely Avdiivka and Bakhmut, Zelensky said in an evening video address. He also added that Ukraine’s Armed Forces are preparing to battle for the strategic Kherson region.
In addition to retaking territories, Ukraine has also continuously caused Russia to suffer military losses. According to estimates from the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, at least 69,220 Russian soldiers have now been killed in combat.