The United States stands with the government of Ukraine as it seeks to deliver a just, hopeful future for the people of Ukraine, Vice President Biden said.

“I want you to know that the American people support you. Your moral and physical courage inspires us. We are proud to be your partner and your friend,” the vice president said in a video address at the International Support for Ukraine Conference in Kyiv April 28.

The conference allowed the government of Ukraine to show the international community its progress on a number of economic, judicial and regulatory reforms. Foreign investors, businessmen and government officials representing 56 countries attended the one-day conference.

Biden highlighted several of Ukraine’s achievements in the past year, including Ukraine’s continued stand against Russian aggression, its new laws to fight corruption, and “the freest, fairest, and most widely monitored elections in Ukraine’s history.” He also noted Kyiv’s progress on improving its parliamentary election laws to make the country’s upcoming October elections “even more free and fair.”

Biden urged the international community to continue sanctions against Russia for its actions in Ukraine. He said that sanctions must not be lifted until Russia “completely fulfills its obligations under the Minsk agreements — including the return of Ukraine’s international border to Ukrainian control.”

The vice president announced the United States will provide $18 million to Ukraine to alleviate the humanitarian situation in eastern Ukraine, making for a total $43 million in U.S. humanitarian aid to Ukraine since the conflict between Russia and Ukraine began.

The United States has provided $450 million in overall assistance since the start of the crisis, in addition to a $1 billion loan guarantee made in 2014. A loan guarantee for an additional $1 billion will be finalized soon.

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