Ukraine’s president has travelled to Japan, which hosted a Group of Seven summit this year, meeting with world leaders and discussing how to further support Kyiv in the wake of Russia’s full-scale invasion.

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"Last year, Mr Biden said that Ukraine and Taiwan are one front of democracy against autocracy. Now, this is confirmed at the level of all G7 leaders," Oleksandr Kraiev, director of the North America programme at the Ukrainian Prism, a think tank, tells

"This is a very positive signal that Ukraine is not just a political project, but an ideological project."

If you have missed out on what happened in Hiroshima over the weekend and what Ukraine got from the G7 leaders’ meeting there, read more below.


Mr Zelenskyy arrived in Hiroshima on a French government plane on Saturday.

He met with UK prime minister Rishi Sunak, thanking him for his leadership in the ‘fighter jet coalition’ and discussed the implementation of the agreements reached during his visit to London.

"The UK has been very active in providing modern fighter jets for Ukraine. And this is historic," Mr Zelenskyy said.

Zelenskyy goes to key global summit, returns with F-16s for Ukraine
Photo via Office of the President of Ukraine

With Italian prime pinister Giorgia Meloni and French president Emmanuel Macron, Ukraine’s president discussed the training of Ukrainian pilots; with German chancellor Olaf Scholz, the Ukrainian peace formula and the results of his visit to Berlin.

And, with European council President Charles Michel, he discussed the implementation of EU recommendations, the export of Ukrainian grain through EU countries, and again, the peace formula.

Zelenskyy goes to key global summit, returns with F-16s for Ukraine
Photo via Office of the President of Ukraine

Mr Zelenskyy also met, for the first time, Indian prime minister Narendra Modi. They discussed humanitarian issues, demining, and the need for mobile hospitals. Ukraine’s president invited Mr Modi to join the peace formula.

Zelenskyy goes to key global summit, returns with F-16s for Ukraine
Photo via Office of the President of Ukraine

The most anticipated meeting took place on Sunday. US president Joe Biden announced a new military aid package for Ukraine worth USD 375 million, and spoke of strengthening Ukraine’s air defences with combat aircraft.

At the final press conference, Mr Biden said that he had informed Mr Zelenskyy about the plans of the United States and its partners to train Ukrainian pilots "on fourth-generation fighters, including the F-16".

He further explained that the F-16s would not be used in Ukraine’s upcoming counteroffensive, but rather to meet Ukraine’s long-term needs.

The US president further stressed that his Ukrainian counterpart assured him the F-16s would not be used to strike Russian territory – but the Russians would still face enormous risks from these aircraft, he said.

Zelenskyy goes to key global summit, returns with F-16s for Ukraine
Photo via Office of the President of Ukraine

Mr Zelenskyy, in turn, called the F-16s a ‘settled issue’ and told Mr Biden Ukraine needed to be given security guarantees before it joined NATO.

On Sunday, the Ukrainian president also held talks with the leaders of Canada, Indonesia, South Korea, and Japan before attending a G7 meeting.

The G7 summit is one of the key ones, setting out  the West’s strategy at least until the end of the year, says Ukraine’s former foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin – and the Hiroshima summit showed that Ukraine will play an important role in that strategy.

The first point of the G7 leaders’ final communiqué is supporting Kyiv for as long as it takes, with the European council’s president directly calling on China to put pressure on Russia.

The leaders also made a separate joint statement on Ukraine. It includes support for Kyiv’s peace formula; aiding Ukraine during the war and in terms of reconstruction; tighter sanctions against Russia, including on diamonds; and Moscow’s economic isolation.

The statement further reads that the G7 will strive to make Russia pay for its losses and war crimes should not go unpunished.

"This means that any insinuations that 'the West is ready to abandon us, stop helping us after the counter-offensive and force us to a truce' are attempts to influence and disorient us," Mr Kraiev tells

"In fact, the strategic narrative of the West is complete and just victory for Ukraine, with no concessions, no backing down, no stopping resistance, and no reconciling with Russia."

The G7 summit’s practical plane – pun intended – is the F-16.

On the eve of Mr Zelenskyy’s arrival, a fighter jet coalition led by the UK and the Netherlands began to take shape, and the UN finally agreed to train Ukrainian pilots and gave the green light to providing the aircraft by its allies.

The summit was an opportunity to coordinate the partners’ actions and make sure that the idea was politically supported.

Mr Biden could have been more open about the F-16s, Mr Kraiev says, adding that he nevertheless sent the right kind of message.

"The New York Times recently wrote that the Americans did not want to train Ukrainian pilots and would not provide F-16s. At least, Mr Biden dispelled this narrative," he explains.

Another aspect of the Hiroshima summit is searching for a security model for Ukraine.

In his speech to the G7 leaders, Mr Zelenskyy said: "Ukraine expects clear signals at the NATO summit in Vilnius in July, and also seeks security guarantees before joining the Alliance."

Mr Klimkin believes that the G7 leaders’ agreements will largely determine the contents of the Vilnius summit.

"The security model is the number one issue after military things... NATO is the only option for us, otherwise we will not be able to develop," he tells

Zelenskyy goes to key global summit, returns with F-16s for Ukraine
Photo via Office of the President of Ukraine

The NATO countries represented in the G7 are the most influential members of the Alliance, Mr Kraiev notes, adding it was extremely important to convey Ukraine’s security vision to them on the eve of the Vilnius summit.

"Just as Mr Zelenskyy’s European tour was a preparation for the G7, so the G7’s backroom meetings are a preparation for Vilnius. It's a chain," the expert explains.

"If Ukraine is not ready to join NATO now, we need significant guarantees – approximately the same as in Sweden and Finland. We discussed this at the G7 and laid the foundations for the ideas that will be presented at Vilnius."

Training of Ukrainian pilots on fighter jets is set to begin this summer. While it is unknown how long it will last, Yahoo News reported last week that it could be reduced to four months instead of a year and a half.

As Ukrainian pilots undergo training, the partners will have to decide how, when and how many F-16s to provide Ukraine with – something  that will be discussed at a meeting of NATO defence ministers in June.

Ukraine earlier signalled hopes to receive forty to fifty aircraft, the first ones preferably in the autumn.

Mr Kraiev believes this is possible due to three factors: Ukrainian pilots will be trained; the infrastructure could be set up for F-16s, since they can now be protected by Patriot air defence systems; and the fear of escalation from Russia no longer plays such a big role, as Moscow has significantly exhausted its escalation potential.

"Russia simply has nothing more to escalate," says Mr Kraiev. "All three factors have come together, and it is absolutely realistic that we will receive these aircraft in the autumn."

The Euro-Atlantic security structure and Ukraine will be in the focus of the next strategic platform – the NATO summit in Vilnius, Ukraine’s ambassador to the Alliance Natalia Galibarenko earlier told in an interview.

And, while Kyiv understands NATO membership is a no-go during the war, its goal is ambitious nonetheless.

"There should be a clear commitment [to Ukraine's future in NATO], and it will become a reality when the security conditions are right," Ms Galibarenko said.