Biden to travel to Poland to discuss Ukraine crisis with Duda

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U.S. President Joe Biden walks to board Marine One, before traveling to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware for the weekend, on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, U.S., March 18, 2022. REUTERS/Al Drago/File Photo

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WASHINGTON, March 20 (Reuters) - U.S. President Joseph Biden will travel to Poland on Friday to discuss the international response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine that has sparked a "humanitarian and human rights crisis," White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said late Sunday.

Biden will travel to Warsaw where he will hold a bilateral meeting with President Andrzej Duda, the White House said. Over 2 million refugees have entered Poland from Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion on Feb. 24, the Polish border guard said on Friday.

Biden's Poland trip will come a day after he meets in Brussels with NATO Allies, G7 Leaders and European Union Leaders to discuss international efforts to support Ukraine after Russia's invasion, the White House said.

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The White House also said Biden will host a call Monday at 11 a.m. EST with President Emmanuel Macron of France, Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom to discuss their coordinated responses to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

United Nations data showed as of Thursday about 3.2 million have fled abroad from Ukraine since last month, in what has become Europe's fastest growing refugee crisis since World War Two. The U.N. said some of the 2 million people entering Poland from Ukraine have moved on to other countries in the EU but the "the majority are believed to be still in Poland."

On Thursday, Biden will attend an emergency NATO Summit on Ukraine as well as a G7 meeting. He will also join a scheduled European Council Summit to discuss Ukraine "including transatlantic efforts to impose economic costs on Russia, provide humanitarian support to those affected by the violence, and address other challenges related to the conflict," the White House said.

Earlier on Sunday, Psaki said Biden was not planning to visit Ukraine during his European trip this week.

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Reporting by David Shepardson and Ismail Shakil; Editing by Christopher Cushing and Michael Perry

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