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U.S. Embassy in Kyiv reopens with flag-raising

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U.S. Embassy in Kyiv reopens with flag-raising
The U.S. flag flies at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine on Wednesday after it reopened for the first time since Russia's invasion. Photo courtesy of U.S. Department of State.

May 18 (UPI) -- Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced Wednesday that the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine's capital, Kyiv, has reopened for the first time since Russia invaded Ukraine three months ago.

Blinken tweeted photos of the embassy and the U.S. flag flying in front of it.

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"The Stars and Stripes fly again over Embassy Kyiv. I can announce that we have officially resumed Embassy operations in Ukraine's capital. We stand proudly with the government and people of Ukraine as they bravely defend their country from Putin's brutal invasion. Slava Ukraine!" Blinken tweeted.

Operations at the embassy were suspended in February to protect U.S. personnel after the invasion.

In a statement Wednesday, Blinken promised added security.

"As we take this momentous step, we have put forward additional measures to increase the safety of our colleagues who are returning to Kyiv and have enhanced our security measures and protocols," he said.

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While celebrating the embassy's reopening, Blinken warned of "challenges ahead" as Russia's war in Ukraine "rages on."

"Russia's forces inflict death and destruction on Ukrainian soil every day," he said. "With strength of purpose, we reaffirm our commitment to the people and government of Ukraine, and we look forward to carrying out our mission from the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv."

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