In his speech to the US Congress, Selenskyj emphasized his countrymen’s will to persevere. “We are fighting and we will win because we are united,” says the Ukrainian president. The parliamentarians honored Zelenskyj’s statements with a standing ovation.

Speaking to the US Congress in Washington, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for continued support for Kiev’s war effort. “It is a great honor for me to be in the US Congress and to speak to you and all Americans. Contrary to all doomsday scenarios, Ukraine has not fallen. Ukraine is alive and kicking,” said Zelenskyj at the joint session of the US Senate and of the House of Representatives.

The President of Ukraine received a standing ovation as he entered the plenary chamber. Several members of Congress shook Zelenskyy’s hand, many wearing the colors of the Ukrainian flag, blue and yellow. Zelenskyy presented the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, with a Ukrainian flag from the frontline town of Bakhmut. “This flag is a symbol of our victory. In this war we stand, we fight and we will win because we are united. Ukraine, America and the entire free world,” said Zelenskyy.

Zelenskyy’s visit was well timed: exactly 300 days since Russia invaded Ukraine, on the day a new US ambassador to Russia was confirmed, and just before Congress voted on an additional $44.9 billion in new military and economic assets emergency aid. But Republicans, who will take control of the House from Democrats on Jan. 3, have raised concerns about continued funding and could block billions of dollars in war aid starting next month.

Once again, Zelenskyy asked for the delivery of more US-made heavy weapons. “Ukraine has never asked American soldiers to fight in our place on our land. I assure you that Ukrainian soldiers are perfectly capable of operating American tanks and planes themselves,” said Zelenskyy. The artillery delivered so far is not sufficient.

“Your funds are not alms. They are an investment in global security and democracy, which we handle very responsibly,” Zelenskyj said. The world is too interconnected for any country to sit back and feel safe. “This fight will decide the world in which our children and grandchildren and their children and grandchildren will live.” Members of the House of Representatives and senators from both parties stood up and applauded repeatedly during Zelenskyi’s speech.

“Ukraine is holding its lines and will never surrender,” said Zelenskyy. He compared his country’s struggle against Moscow’s forces to the battles of World War II of the American Revolution. With a view to the upcoming Christmas celebrations, he emphasized the stamina of the Ukrainians. “We will celebrate Christmas (…), even if there is no electricity. The light of our belief in ourselves will not go out,” says Zelenskyj. “If Russian missiles attack us, we will do our best to protect ourselves. If they attack us with Iranian drones and our people have to go to bomb shelters on Christmas Eve, Ukrainians will still sit down at the holiday table and cheer each other up.”

Zelenskyy stressed that the coming year will be a “turning point” in the war. “I know that this is the point when Ukrainian courage and American determination must guarantee the future of our common freedom,” Zelenskyy said. He discussed a ten-point peace formula for Ukraine with US President Joe Biden. “I am glad that President Biden supported our peace initiative today. Each of you, ladies and gentlemen, can help implement it today to ensure that the American government remains solid, bicameral and non-partisan,” Zelenskyy said to lawmakers .