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Secretary of State Blinken, other officials walk back Biden remarks on Putin ouster

The president said the Russian leader "cannot remain in power," but the U.S. has clarified it is not pursuing regime change in Moscow.

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The day after President Joe Biden's fiery remarks, which some said were tantamount to calling for regime change in Russia, several U.S. officials took to the Sunday morning news shows to walk back those controversial remarks. Biden had said Russian President Vladimir Putin "cannot remain in power" during a fiery speech from Poland. But Secretary of State Antony Blinken reiterated Sunday that the U.S. was not pursuing "a strategy of regime change" in Moscow.

The fallout from the comments, which prompted a swift response from the Kremlin, overshadowed Biden's efforts to frame Russia's war in Ukraine as the battle of a generation and to rally the world's support behind the embattled democracy.

While NATO countries have backed Kyiv and sought to punish Moscow with sanctions, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy again urged NATO to send more planes, tanks and weapons to support his country's dogged resistance.

Having struggled to make progress in the first month of the war, Moscow's forces appeared to be focusing on an effort to secure control of eastern Ukraine while battling Ukrainian counterattacks.

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