'If Ukraine falls, we fall': Czech president urges US to pass aid package

In an interview with CNN, Petr Pavel said that Czechia and other EU countries could not 'do it alone' in assisting Ukraine with support.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 19.04.2024 11:07:00 (updated on 19.04.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

In a prime-time interview with U.S. broadcaster CNN Thursday, Czech President Petr Pavel urged American politicians to approve aid to Ukraine in the House of Representatives this week. Pavel emphasized the importance of American help, calling it “irreplaceable” for Ukraine’s defense against Russian aggression. CNN named Pavel one of the “strongest voices against Russian aggression.”

Czechia does not have enough resources

Speaking to CNN presenter Christiane Amanpour, Pavel referenced an upcoming U.S. House of Representatives vote on providing Ukraine with further military and financial aid. "We, as the Czech Republic, do not have enough weapons in stock to be able to help Ukraine alone,” Pavel said.

"The Czech Republic leads other countries in the effort to buy ammunition from other countries," Amanpour pointed out during the interview, citing Czechia’s recent initiative of sourcing over 1 million pieces of ammunition – together with around 20 EU and NATO countries – from non-EU countries.

"Ukraine is as important to Europe as it is to the United States and the rest of the world. It's not just about defending an attacked country, it's about principles. And these principles are as fundamental to the U.S. as they are to us."

Czech President Petr Pavel

Pavel also notably referenced the influence of other actors on the sidelines of the war. According to the Czech president, China and other countries in the Middle East want the war to go on as long as possible to help destabilize the West. “If Russia wins, it will inspire China, countries in Africa, in the Middle East,” Pavel added. The Czech president said that if “Ukraine falls, we also fall.”

During the interview, Pavel also mentioned Prime Minister Petr Fiala’s visit to the U.S. earlier this week, when Fiala told President Joe Biden – referencing the 1968 Prague Spring that he did not “want to see Russian tanks in Czechia again.” As well as speaking to Biden, Fiala also emphasized the importance of providing aid to Ukraine to Speaker of the House of Representatives in the U.S. Mike Johnson.

Since the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine over two years ago, Ukraine has provided about CZK 57 billion worth of aid to the war-stricken country. 

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The U.S. House of Representatives will vote on support for Ukraine on Saturday. Before Christmas, Republicans blocked a military aid package that included money for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. 

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