Biden cancels Wilmington holiday trip over Ukraine crisis

U.S. President Joe Biden abruptly on Sunday cancelled his travel plans to his home in Wilmington, Delaware, where he planned to spend public holiday on Monday.

But one hour after the White House made his travel plan known, he shelved the idea.

The cancellation followed his four-hour meeting with the national security team on Russian threat to Ukraine.

It’s unusual for a U.S. president’s travel plans to change this quickly, especially plans that involve leaving Washington, Cnbc.com reported.

According to the White House, the president “had a family-related issue that was going to take him to Wilmington, DE, tonight but he will no longer be going and will remain in Washington, DC tonight.”

Biden’s schedule and his interaction with his national security team have taken on a new sense of urgency this weekend after the president said he believed Russian President Vladimir Putin had decided to carry out an attack on Ukraine “in the coming days.”

“We have reason to believe the Russian forces are planning and intend to attack Ukraine in the coming week, in the coming days,” Biden said Friday in a formal address to the nation, his second in the past week.

Advertisement

“We believe that they will target Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, a city of 2.8 million innocent people.”

Revealing information like this about an adversary’s battle plans is highly unusual, and Biden’s prediction sent shockwaves around the world.

Russia currently has 190,000 troops deployed on Ukraine’s northern and eastern border — nearly half of the nation’s military.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken reiterated Biden’s remarks while appearing on “Face the Nation,” telling host Margaret Brennan on Sunday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is “moving forward” with an invasion.

“Everything we’re seeing tells us that the decision we believe President Putin has made to invade is moving forward,” Blinken said, pointing to recent provocations as well as the news that joint Russian and Belarusian military exercises would be extended indefinitely, originally having been set to end on Sunday.

Advertisement