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Ukraine’s first lady has called for more defensive weapons from the United States that can be used to prevent Russian airstrikes that “kill children in their strollers” and that can protect Ukrainians from Russian “terrorist attacks.”

Olena Zelenska, who is visiting Washington this week, spoke with a member of Congress on July 20 at the United States Capitol, saying Ukraine was grateful for the military aid the United States had sent so far, but now specifically needs air defense systems. .

“We want every father and mother to be able to tell their children to sleep peacefully. There will be no more airstrikes,” she said.

She said the weapons she is asking for were not the type used to wage war on another country’s territory, “but to protect one’s home and the right to wake up alive in that home.”

Members of Congress applauded his speech and said they were ready to authorize more aid. The United States has already provided $8 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since the start of the war.

Her description of “children killed in strollers” referred to a Russian airstrike last week in the central town of Vinnytsya that killed 4-year-old Liza Dmytriyeva, whose body was found next to a stroller.

The child, who has Down syndrome, had been seen playing in a video posted by her mother less than two hours before the attack.

She also described some of the other civilians killed, including elderly people who lived through World War II and the Holocaust only to be killed by Russian airstrikes in 2022, and showed videos of children who she said had been injured or killed.

One featured a 3-year-old boy now in Germany learning to use prosthetic limbs.

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“How many children like him are there in Ukraine? How many more families like this could still be destroyed by war?

While Ukraine is grateful for Washington’s military aid, it has declared, “Unfortunately, the war is not over” and appealed for arms on behalf of Ukrainians who have been killed and maimed and on behalf of those who survived.

Zelenska, who visited the White House on July 19, said that while US lawmakers can expect normal hours, she and other Ukrainian mothers are wondering if their children will return to school next year. fall, as teachers debate whether they should prepare for classrooms or bomb shelters.

“This normality is exactly what we are deprived of,” Zelenska said.

Zelenska’s husband, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, said earlier this week that he expected “significant results” from his wife’s meetings in Washington.

He said his speech to members of Congress would be important, adding, “I strongly believe it will be heard by those responsible for decision-making in the United States.”

His tasks include increasing US support for Ukraine, securing additional support to “protect people from Russian terror” and stepping up humanitarian aid, Zelenskiy said.

In addition to her meeting with US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden at the White House, she also visited the State Department and met with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

With information from Reuters