Vice President Biden spoke today with Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev. The Vice President assured President Plevneliev of the United States’ ironclad commitment to the collective defense of its NATO Allies and thanked him for Bulgaria’s contributions to the Euro-Atlantic partnership. The two leaders discussed the alarming situation in eastern Ukraine, and pledged their full support for Ukraine’s development as an independent, unitary, and democratic state. The Vice President and President Plevneliev stressed that Russia needs to take immediate, concrete actions to de-escalate the situation in eastern Ukraine. The leaders also discussed the importance of efforts to combat corruption, promote democratic accountability, and support independent media in Bulgaria and throughout Europe.