KYIV, Feb 14 — Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday invited US President Joe Biden to visit Kyiv to show Washington’s support in the face of a feared Russian invasion.

“I am convinced that your visit to Kyiv in the coming days... would be a powerful signal and help stabilise the situation,” the presidency quoted Zelensky as telling Biden in a phone call earlier Sunday.

Washington made no mention of an invitation in its readout of the 50-minute call.

The White House said “Biden reaffirmed the commitment of the United States to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“The two leaders agreed on the importance of continuing to pursue diplomacy and deterrence in response to Russia’s military build-up on Ukraine’s borders,” the White House said.

Zelensky’s office said the two leaders had discussed potential economic sanctions against Russia should it invade its western neighbour, having surrounded it with more than 100,000 troops in the past weeks.

“We are not yet a member of Nato. For this reason, only a strong Ukrainian army can guarantee our state’s security,” Zelensky added after thanking Biden for steady shipments of US military supplies. — AFP