White House national security spokesman John Kirby reiterated concerns about Americans going to Ukraine to help in the war.
The warning came after The Telegraph’s exclusive report that two former US servicemen had been captured during fighting with Russian forces in Ukraine.
Relatives of Alabama veterans Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, and Alexander Drueke, 39, had been in contact with both US Senate and House offices seeking information about the men’s whereabouts, press aides said.
The White House administration was not able to confirm reports about the missing Americans, but Mr Kirby said: “We’ll do the best we can to monitor this and see what we can learn about it.”
He said Ukraine was “not the place for Americans to be travelling”.
US President Joe Biden announced $1 billion worth of new arms for Ukraine as Pentagon officials defended the pace and quality of supplies as meeting Kyiv’s battlefield needs.
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US to provide $1bn in arms for Ukraine
US President Joe Biden announced $1 billion worth of new arms for Ukraine on Wednesday as Pentagon officials defended the pace and quality of supplies as meeting Kyiv’s battlefield needs
Ukrainian troops shelled Russian targets on the front lines in the eastern Donbas region with newly arrived French Caesar howitzers
Kyiv officials met in Brussels with Western allies, hoping to obtain more ammunition and lethal weapons to turn the tables on the invaders
View from the window: All that remains of families’ homes
Calls for captured US fighters to be treated fairly
Alexander Drueke and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh “have enlisted in the Ukrainian army, and thus are afforded legal combatant protections”, American politician Adam Kinzinger tweeted.
“As such, we expect members of the Legion to be treated in accordance with the Geneva convention.”
It was unclear whether Mr Kinzinger, an Illinois Republican, had any further information about the men.
He was commenting on a tweet sent earlier on Wednesday by Task Force Baguette – a group of former US and French servicemen – saying that two Americans fighting with them were captured a week ago.
The group said Ukrainian intelligence confirmed the information.
‘Ukraine is not the place for Americans’
John Kirby, a national security spokesman at the White House, said on Wednesday that the administration was not able to confirm the reports about missing Americans.
“We’ll do the best we can to monitor this and see what we can learn about it,” he said.
However, he reiterated his warnings against Americans going to Ukraine.
“Ukraine is not the place for Americans to be travelling,” he said.
“If you feel passionate about supporting Ukraine, there’s any number of ways to do that that that are safer and just as effective.”
Two US veterans reported missing in Ukraine
Two US veterans from Alabama who were in Ukraine assisting in the war against Russia have not been heard from in days and are missing, members of the state’s congressional delegation said on Wednesday.
Relatives of Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, of Trinity and Alexander Drueke, 39, of Tuscaloosa had been in contact with both Senate and House offices seeking information about the men’s whereabouts, press aides said.
Rep. Robert Aderholt said Mr Huynh had volunteered to go fight with the Ukrainian army against Russia, but relatives had not heard from him since June 8, when he was in the Kharkiv region of northeastern Ukraine, which is near the Russian border.
Mr Huynh and Mr Drueke were together, an aide to Mr Aderholt said: “As you can imagine, his loved ones are very concerned about him.
“My office has placed inquires with both the United States Department of State and the Federal Bureau of Investigation trying to get any information possible.”
Rep. Terri Sewell said Mr Drueke’s mother reached out to her office earlier this week after she lost contact with her son.
Today’s top stories
Two former US servicemen have been captured during fighting with Russian forces in Ukraine, The Telegraph has learnt
Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s president, has demanded EU candidacy status for his war-torn country and a package of sanctions against Russia ahead of Emmanuel Macron’s and Olaf Scholz’s visit to Kyiv
Russian-backed separatists fighting in Ukraine are suffering from staggering casualties, according to official figures, amid accusations that the Kremlin is using them as “cannon fodder”
Moscow has blamed Western sanctions for its decision to curb gas supplies to Europe in a move Germany said was politically motivated
Russia claims to have destroyed a large quantity of Nato-supplied weapons kept at a base in western Ukraine, as the head of the Western alliance said there was an “urgent need” to speed up arms deliveries