President Joe Biden offered condolences to the families of the more than a dozen people killed in a helicopter crash near Kyiv on Wednesday, reiterating the United States’ “unfailing partnership” with Ukraine amid Russia’s invasion.
“We grieve with all those who are mourning this heartbreaking tragedy,” Biden said in a statement, calling Ukrainian Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky, who was killed in the crash, a “reformer and patriot.”
Ukraine did not claim direct Russian involvement, but President Volodymyr Zelensky said the tragedy was a consequence of the war.
“There are no accidents at war. These are all war results,” Zelensky said in English, appearing by videolink at the Davos Forum.
Officials initially said that 18 people died but revised the toll down to 14 — including Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky, other ministry officials and a child — after search operations ended.
Dmytro Serbyn, who was in his apartment when the helicopter crashed, rushed to help children as soon as he saw flames billowing over the kindergarten.