A round of applause for Ukraine's Poroshenko in Congress as U.S. President Obama offers assurances for what the Ukranian President calls ''the war for the free world.'' Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
A round of applause as Petro Poroshenko enters the U.S. Congress Thursday. As he is speaking, the White House pledges $53 million in aid, most of it security-related, but no weapons. The Ukrainian President says Ukraine's fight is everyone's fight. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT PETRO POROSHENKO SAYING: "The war these young men are fighting today is not Ukrainian war. It is Europe's and America's war too. It is the war for the free world. For the free world." Later, at the White House, assurances from U.S. President Barack Obama. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "I'm pleased that during this meeting we reaffirmed that commitment to Ukraine and we are providing additional assistance, both economic and security assistance to Ukraine to make sure they are not only able to whether this storm economically but they are also going to be able to continue to build up an effective security force to defend themselves from aggression." Poroshenko took over as president in June and hopes to consolidate his authority in a parliamentary election October 26. The pro-western leader called for a cease-fire in September after heavy battlefield losses that Kiev ascribed to Russian military intervention on behalf of separatist rebels in the east. But it is a shaky truce. Ukrainian Government forces have been told to remain on full battle alert as Moscow continues to deny that its military has been involved in the Ukraine fighting.