President Biden delivered remarks pertaining to “freedom” and “democracy” during a major speech in Warsaw on Tuesday to mark the upcoming first anniversary of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
The speech came a day after his surprise visit to Kiev, a major sign of U.S. support for Ukraine. Biden held a bilateral meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda ahead of his remarks, discussing their shared efforts to support Ukraine, impose consequences on Russia, and strengthen NATO.
During the speech, Biden went over the usual talking points and noted the resilience of Ukraine in the face of aggression, Axios reported.
"One year later we know the answers. Yes, we would stand up for sovereignty and we did. Yes, we would stand up for the right of people to live free from aggression, and we did. And we would stand up for democracy, and we did," he said.
National security adviser Jake Sullivan had earlier said that Biden's speech would address the "larger contest" between aggressors seeking to "destroy fundamental principles" and the nations seeking to uphold them.
Sullivan praised Poland's role in the West's approach to the war, noting the country had been "critical" in welcoming Ukrainian refugees and serving as a logistics hub for military assistance entering Ukraine.
Duda expressed gratitude for Biden's visit to Poland, noting that it was an "important message to the world that Poland is secure."
Biden's speech comes hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered his annual national address, in which he described Ukraine as a proxy for NATO.
“The West forced the implementation of this project today, supporting the 2014 coup. After all, the revolution is bloody, anti-state, anti-constitutional. As if nothing had happened, as if it were necessary, they even reported how much money they spent on this,” said Putin, going over the history of the conflict.
“The ideological basis laid Russophobia and extremely aggressive nationalism,” he added, detailing the formation of numerous neo-Nazi brigades in Ukraine, which operate in the open. “They don’t give a damn about who is in the fight against us, in the fight against Russia.”
“The West is using Ukraine as a battering ram against Russia,” Putin added in further remarks. “The more long-range missiles are being shipped to Ukraine, the further we’ll have to push this threat off our borders.”
During his speech, Putin announced that Russia would suspend its participation in the New START nuclear arms control treaty — the last remaining arms control agreement between Washington and Moscow.