Ukrainian President Zelenskyy planning trip to Germany, France: US media

A US media outlet has reported that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy plans to visit Germany and France this week to appeal for continued military aid.

The Ukrainian forces are struggling with shortages of weapons and ammunition and also face the need to strengthen air defense systems as Russia's invasion drags on.

US-based Bloomberg quoted sources as saying that arrangements are being made for Zelenskyy to attend an annual security conference that opens on Friday in the German city of Munich. The report said he will probably visit Berlin and Paris as part of the trip.

Zelenskyy is expected to seek to discuss a security agreement for Ukraine, as the US Congress remains divided over military aid for his country.

Meanwhile, in Russia, the leader of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, Gennady Zyuganov, has revealed that President Vladimir Putin is expected to deliver a state of the nation address later this month.

February 24 marks the second anniversary of the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Putin will likely call for national unity to continue the military offensive in the run-up to Russia's presidential election next month.