Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks with U.S. President Joe Biden on the phone in Kyiv, Ukraine, on Dec. 11, 2022.
Ukrainian Presidential Press Service | Reuters
White House and congressional security officials were laying the groundwork for a possible visit Wednesday from Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskyy, five other sources familiar with the planning told NBC News.
U.S. Capitol Police, State Department agents and emergency management personnel have reportedly been preparing for Zelenskyy’s possible arrival. The Ukrainian president, who is currently the target of Russian forces amid its brutal assault on his country, could address lawmakers during a joint session of Congress in the House chamber, they said.
Plans are flexible and dependent on security, the sources say. U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., confirmed to NBC News that she invited Zelenskyy to D.C., but she wouldn’t say whether he was coming.
Congress is poised to approve a new $1.7 trillion spending bill that funds the federal government through the end of September that includes $44.9 billion in aid for Ukraine. The White House is also expected to announce another military aid package 7as early as Wednesday that will include Patriot missile defense system, according to officials.
An official representing the Ukrainian embassy in Washington, D.C. told CNBC they are aware of reports but cannot confirm Zelenskyy’s visit.
Punchbowl News reported the anticipated visit earlier.