U.S. Seeks to Strengthen Supply Chains 1:37

(CNN) -- U.S. President Joe Biden will host Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky at the White House on Tuesday as talks on an aid deal to Ukraine remain stalled in Congress.

The visit, announced Sunday by the White House, is Zelensky's second to Washington since the war in Ukraine began. The last time was in September.

Zelensky's visit comes at a critical time in negotiations in Congress over emergency aid to Ukraine. Congress appears to be close to reaching a deal that ties changes to immigration and border policy to the emergency aid package that will provide funding to Ukraine and Israel before lawmakers go on vacation.

The meeting is intended to "underscore the unwavering commitment of the United States to support the people of Ukraine in their defense against the brutal Russian invasion," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

"As Russia intensifies its missile and drone attacks on Ukraine, the leaders will discuss Ukraine's urgent needs and the vital importance of continued U.S. support at this critical time," he added.


If Congress goes on vacation without reaching a deal, the White House will have to make tough decisions about supplying allies like Ukraine at the expense of U.S. military readiness. Senior Biden administration officials have been sounding alarms for weeks about the depletion of funds earmarked for Ukraine and its potential consequences.

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The government's proposed $106 billion aid package includes about $000 billion in aid for Ukraine's defenses against Russia, while the rest goes toward Israel's war against Hamas, security in Taiwan and funding operations on the U.S.-Mexico border.

But top Republicans, wary of adding more to the $111 billion the U.S. has already sent to Ukraine, called for any additional funding to be tied to major changes in immigration policy.

"History will judge harshly those who turn their backs on the cause of freedom," Biden declared earlier this month. "We can't let Putin win."

President Biden said he was willing to make "meaningful compromises at the border," admitting that the country's immigration system is "broken," but added that Ukraine's needs are too critical to wait. He called out "extremist Republicans" as negotiators remain in a critical stalemate over the border security sticking point, saying those Republicans are "playing chicken with our national security."

"Frankly, I think it's amazing that we got to this point in the first place... Russian forces commit war crimes, plain and simple. It's unbelievable," Biden said.

Ukraine claimed on Saturday that Russia launched nearly 100 airstrikes across the country in the space of 24 hours, as its first lady warned that Ukraine was in "mortal danger" without Western military aid.

"We really need help," Ukraine's first lady Olena Zelenska recently told the BBC about support for her country. "In simple words, we cannot get tired of this situation, because if we do, we will die. And if the world gets tired, they'll just let us die."

CNN's Michael Williams, Betsy Klein, Priscilla Alvarez and Lauren Fox contributed to this report.

Joe BidenVolodymyr Zelensky