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Kyiv stands, Putin doubles down, China talks peace

Biden’s symbolic visit to Ukraine reiterates western support, but the rest of the world appears less convinced.

Joe Biden made a surprise visit to Kyiv on Monday (20 February) to demonstrate what he called America’s “unwavering support” for Ukraine’s war effort. It was the first time a US president had visited the country since Russia first attacked Ukraine, in 2014.

Megan Gibson in London, Katie Stallard in Wasington DC, and Ido Vock in Berlin discuss the significance of this visit and Vladimir Putin’s latest warning to the West in his state of the nation speech. They also cover support for Ukraine at the Munich Security Conference this week and in the Global South.

Then the team turns to China, where Xi Jinping is expected to deliver a “peace speech” on the anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine. This follows the visit of China’s leading diplomat to Moscow this week, prompting warnings from the US that China was considering supplying weapons to Russia. The team discuss China’s position on the war and try to unwrap its “strategic swaddle” approach to Russia.

Then in You Ask Us, a listener asks: what did the team get wrong about the conflict over the last year?

If you have a question for You Ask Us, go to

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Read more: 

Ido on why the West’s narrative on Ukraine hasn’t convinced the rest of the world

Megan writes that Biden’s trip to Kyiv reiterates Western support – but not everywhere feels the same

Katie writes that Biden and Putin agree on one thing – the future of the global order is at stake in Ukraine 

John Sullivan: “Vladimir Putin does not want an off-ramp

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