Ukraine live briefing: Biden meets Zelensky at G-7, announces $375M aid package including ammunition, weaponry

HIROSHIMA, Japan — President Biden unveiled a $375 million military assistance package for Ukraine at the Group of Seven summit on Sunday, the latest pledge from Washington of aid that totals $37 billion since Russia’s war began. “Ukraine’s ability to defend itself is essential to being able to end this war permanently and through diplomacy,” Biden told a news conference in Hiroshima. The package includes ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), antitank weapons, armored vehicles and other equipment, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky rejected Russia’s recent claim that it captured Bakhmut after he sparked some confusion when he said the eastern city was now “only in our hearts.” Speaking at a news conference Sunday, Zelensky clarified his earlier comments: “Bakhmut is not occupied by Russian Federation as of today. There are no two or three interpretations of those words.”

Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.

Former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe visits front line in Ukraine: Terry McAuliffe’s seven-day trip to Ukraine this month, including visits to the front line, was highly unusual and what critics might term a risky foray into war tourism, Siobhán O’Grady reports. The 66-year-old former Democratic National Committee chairman called it a personal “fact-finding mission,” traveling nearly 1,900 miles by road.

His goal, he said, was to raise awareness in the United States about the devastating toll of the war, and to expand aid and support for Ukraine. “You’ve got all these countries running away from democracy,” he said. “Here we’ve got a country that is embracing it.”

“We need to win this,” McAuliffe added. “No question about it.”

Masih reported from Seoul, Sands from London, Brasch from Atlanta and Villegas from Washington. Daniel Gilbert in Washington contributed to this report.