Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy “didn’t want to hear it” when US intelligence gathered information that Russia was preparing to invade, Joe Biden has said.
Speaking to donors at a Democratic fundraiser, the US president said: “Nothing like this has happened since World War Two.
“I know a lot of people thought I was maybe exaggerating. But I knew we had data to sustain [Russian president Vladimir Putin] was going to go in, off the border.
“There was no doubt. And Zelenskiy didn’t want to hear it.”
The remarks came as Mr Biden was talking about his work to rally and solidify support for Ukraine as the war continues into its fourth month.
Although Mr Zelenskiy has inspired people with his leadership during the war, his preparation for the invasion — or lack thereof — has remained a controversial issue.
In the weeks before the war began on February 24th, Mr Zelenskiy publicly bristled as Biden administration officials repeatedly warned that a Russian invasion was highly likely.
At the time, Mr Zelenskiy was also concerned that the drumbeat of war was unsettling Ukraine’s fragile economy.