WATCH: Blinken says G7 countries are committed to continued support of Ukraine

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Friday the Group of Seven leading economic powers was committed to continuing their support for Ukraine.

Watch Blinken’s remarks in the player above.

After speaking with fellow G7 members ahead of a meeting next week Blinken said leaders had agreed to “continue doing what we’ve been doing in support of Ukraine”, which includes placing sanctions on Russia and strengthening the defences of other countries.

“The solidarity is strong. It’s real, and there’s a real commitment to carry it through as long as it’s necessary,” he said during a news conference in Berlin.

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Blinken also praised Europe for taking “very courageous steps” to move away from dependence on Russian oil.

“You can’t just flip a switch and end it easily and cleanly,” he acknowledged.

“We’re doing everything we can to support transitions that Europe is making away from Russian oil in the first instance, and then ultimately diversifying their sources of energy going forward,” he added.

Shortages of natural gas and higher prices are putting tremendous financial pressure on Germany, Italy, Austria, Netherlands, Poland, Bulgaria, Finland, the Czech Republic and Denmark, among others.

Russia sees Europe’s need for natural gas as a wedge issue that could weaken the alliance backing Ukraine.