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Biden is meeting with leaders from Israel, Brazil, Ukraine and the 'Stans' this week

The U.N. logo on a door at the United Nations headquarters in New York. President Biden and other world leaders will meet there next week for the annual general assembly.
Angela Weiss
/
AFP via Getty Images
The U.N. logo on a door at the United Nations headquarters in New York. President Biden and other world leaders will meet there next week for the annual general assembly.

President Biden will be the first U.S. president to meet together with leaders from five Central Asian nations sometimes called the "Stans" — Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan — when he gathers with them next week on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

The meeting with the former Soviet states on Tuesday is likely to be closely watched by Russia and China. Biden plans to discuss regional security issues with the leaders, as well as trade, climate and governance issues, said Jake Sullivan, Biden's national security adviser.

It's part of a busy agenda at the U.N., where Biden will emphasize U.S. leadership around the world in his annual address. "We've put a lot of points on the board," Sullivan said.

On Wednesday, Biden plans to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in New York. While the two leaders have met many times during the course of their long political careers, this is the first time they will have met since Netanyahu won his election last fall.

There have been months of tensions between the U.S. and Israel over Netanyahu's far-right proposals to overhaul the country's judicial system.

Biden plans another meeting with Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Sullivan said they will be joined by labor leaders.

National security adviser Jake Sullivan speaks to reporters at the White House on Sept. 15 about President Biden's upcoming meetings at the United Nations General Assembly.
Kevin Dietsch / Getty Images
/
Getty Images
National security adviser Jake Sullivan speaks to reporters at the White House on Sept. 15 about President Biden's upcoming meetings at the United Nations General Assembly.

Zelenskyy will be in Washington on Thursday

Then on Thursday, Biden will host Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the White House — a meeting that comes as the White House asks Congress for $24 billion more in funding to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia's invasion.

Congress approved more than $112 billion in aid for Ukraine in four spending bills last year. Some Republicans in the House of Representatives have pushed back against adding to that, and the new request is wrapped up in a broader fight over government spending that threatens to shut down the government at the end of the month.

Sullivan said Zelenskyy will meet with congressional leaders from both parties during his visit to make the case for more funding.

"We believe that whatever other to-ing and fro-ing there is in the legislative context, that at the end of the day the United States will be able to continue to deliver for Ukraine," Sullivan said.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Franco Ordoñez is a White House Correspondent for NPR's Washington Desk. Before he came to NPR in 2019, Ordoñez covered the White House for McClatchy. He has also written about diplomatic affairs, foreign policy and immigration, and has been a correspondent in Cuba, Colombia, Mexico and Haiti.
Tamara Keith has been a White House correspondent for NPR since 2014 and co-hosts the NPR Politics Podcast, the top political news podcast in America. Keith has chronicled the Trump administration from day one, putting this unorthodox presidency in context for NPR listeners, from early morning tweets to executive orders and investigations. She covered the final two years of the Obama presidency, and during the 2016 presidential campaign she was assigned to cover Hillary Clinton. In 2018, Keith was elected to serve on the board of the White House Correspondents' Association.