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The State Department announced Wednesday that the United States will reopen its embassy in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, after three months closed to “relocate staff” for security.
In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken emphasized that, although the United States “lowered our flag” from the embassy in Kyiv in February, “this would in no way prevent our engagement with, and support” with Ukraine and European allies.
“Today we are officially resuming operations at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv,” Blinken continued in the statement. “The Ukrainian people, with our security assistance, have defended their homeland in the face of Russia’s unconscionable invasion, and, as a result, the Stars and Stripes are flying over the Embassy once again.”
Support for Ukraine beyond the embassy
Blinken reiterated that the United States “proudly” supports the Ukrainian government and citizenry, which is defending itself against the Kremlin’s “brutal war of aggression.” He also reported that they have “enhanced” security measures and protocols for American diplomats returning to Kyiv.
“We are committed to confronting the challenges ahead. The war rages on. Russia’s forces inflict death and destruction on Ukrainian soil every day. Millions of Ukrainians are displaced from their homes and mourn the loss of their loved ones. With strength of purpose, we reaffirm our commitment to the people and government of Ukraine, and we look forward to carrying out our mission from the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv,” the Secretary of State said.
Russia invaded Ukraine from the east on February 21 in what Vladimir Putin called a “special military operation,” which has already left 3,668 Ukrainians dead (including 69 children and 176 teenagers) and 3,896 wounded.
Days earlier, on February 14, the United States closed its embassy to move its operations to the city of Lviv, some 550 kilometers west of Kyiv, in the face of intelligence reports suggesting that an attack on the Ukrainian capital was imminent.