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Zelensky says he called for recognition of Russia as a ‘terrorist state’ in meeting with US Senate GOP delegation

President Of Ukraine

UKRAINE (CNN) - Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with a congressional delegation led by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in Kyiv Saturday, and called for Russia to officially be recognized as a "terrorist state," he said Saturday in his nightly address.

Zelensky said he discussed US support for Ukraine and tightening sanctions on Russia with the delegation.

"I believe that this visit once again demonstrates the strength of bipartisan support for our state, the strength of ties between the Ukrainian and American nations," Zelensky said.

CNN previously reported Zelensky has asked President Joe Biden to designate Russia a state sponsor of terrorism.

The Ukrainian president added in his address Saturday he "expressed gratitude for the historic decision to renew the Lend Lease program" during the GOP delegation's visit.

Biden earlier this week signed into law the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act.

The new law, which eases some of the requirements for the US to lend or lease military equipment to Ukraine, passed with a bipartisan majority in the US House and Senate. Its sponsors said the legislation gives Biden much broader authority to help Ukraine defend itself against Russia and addresses how the US can get weapons to Ukraine faster.

Zelensky said earlier Saturday on his Instagram account the GOP delegation visit was "a strong signal of bipartisan support for Ukraine from the United States Congress and the American people."

He added on Instagram: "Thank you for your leadership in helping us in our struggle not only for our country, but also for democratic values and freedoms. We really appreciate it."

Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, John Barrasso of Wyoming and John Cornyn of Texas were also seen meeting Zelensky in video and photos posted to the Ukrainian president's social media accounts.

CNN Newsource

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