US diplomats travel back to Ukraine for first time since start of Russia-Ukraine conflict

Martinez

The State Department said that American diplomats have begun traveling back to Ukraine as the United States prepares to reopen its embassy in Kyiv in the next few weeks.

“They are making, for the time being, day trips into Lviv. That first day trip started today,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters, referring to U.S. diplomats.

“As I said before, we are accelerating planning to reestablish a diplomatic presence at our embassy in Kyiv. It is something we want to as soon as it is responsible for us to do so,” he added.

The day trip to Lviv marks the first time that U.S. diplomats have returned to Ukraine since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of the country, according to CNN, which first reported about the trip. A source familiar told the network the trip was made from Poland to Lviv.

Speaking to reporters on Monday in southeastern Poland, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that American diplomats would be returning to Ukraine within days and that the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv would be anticipated to open in the next few weeks.

“I think that will take place over a couple of weeks, would be my expectation,” Blinken said regarding the opening of the embassy. “We’re doing it deliberately, we’re doing it carefully, we’re doing it with the security of our personnel foremost in mind, but we’re doing it.”

In mid-February, the Biden administration announced that its embassy in Kyiv would be closing in the Ukrainian capital and relocating operations elsewhere as officials warned that a Russian invasion of Ukraine could happen soon.

The State Department confirmed later in February that its core team in Lviv was now in Poland.

The developments come as Russia launches a renewed offensive in eastern Ukraine after failing to capture Kyiv in a conflict that has lasted more than two months.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to The Hill.

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