U.S. to provide $300 million weapons package to Ukraine as further aid stalls

The Biden administration said on Tuesday it would provide an additional $300 million in security aid to Ukraine, an “extraordinary measure” as President Joe Biden’s request for billions more dollars stalled in Congress.

National security adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters that the emergency package announced by the White House will be funded by “unexpected cost savings” from Pentagon contracts to replace weapons previously supplied to Ukraine. U.S. officials said the aid would include artillery shells, anti-armor weapons, anti-aircraft stinger weapons and other weapons as well as spare parts.

A senior U.S. official said the munitions included medium-range cluster munitions from the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS), which the Ukrainian military has used on several occasions to target Russian headquarters units and troop formations. question. The United States has launched these missiles before, with a range of about 100 miles. U.S. officials declined to say whether they were also sending long-range anti-missile munitions, which Ukrainian officials have been seeking for months.

“Ukraine urgently needs assistance to defend against Russian attacks and to counter Russia’s ongoing offensive in the east and other parts of Ukraine,” Sullivan said.

At a White House briefing on March 12, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan announced a $300 million military package for Ukraine. (Video: The Washington Post, Photo: Sarah L. Voisin/The Washington Post)

Ukraine’s momentum in the war, now in its third year, has begun to wane as frontline troops face dwindling weapons supplies and Russian forces re-break through defensive positions. Biden implored lawmakers during last week’s State of the Union address to pass legislation to allocate an additional $60 billion to aid the government in Kyiv, but the bill, which also includes funds aimed at helping Israel and countering China, stalled in the Republican-led House of Representatives intense argument.

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this $95 billion measure The Senate passed it bipartisanship in February, but House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-Louisiana) refused to vote on it. His tenuous position as speaker is threatened by members of his own party who are trying to condition additional aid to Ukraine on new immigration measures that Democrats say are too harsh.former president Donald Trump While the bill has strong bipartisan support in the Senate, House Republicans are also being encouraged not to pass it.

The Biden administration has approved the transfer of more than $44 billion in military aid to Ukraine since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his troops to invade the country in February 2022, administration officials said, but Congress has not approved The funds were exhausted in January.

Pentagon spokesman Maj. Gen. Patrick Ryder said in a separate briefing that the move was an “extraordinary measure” as Ukraine faces an “existential battle.”

“But that doesn’t change the fact that we urgently need Congress to pass the Department of Defense supplemental request,” Ryder said. “Today’s… package, while providing emergency capabilities for Ukraine’s military, does not go far enough, and the only way to meet Ukraine’s battlefield needs is for Congress to quickly pass a supplemental agreement.”

Asked why the Pentagon had not previously disclosed that the money could be used in Ukraine, Ryder said defense officials had only identified the amount in the past few weeks. He declined to say when the additional weapons and ammunition would be delivered, but expected it to be “very soon.” Ryder said the plan could help Ukraine stay afloat for “a few weeks.”

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Ukrainian military personnel interviewed by The Washington Post this year said they had to ration the artillery shells fired at Russian adversaries because of insufficient inventories.Ukrainian troops were forced to withdraw from the strategically important eastern city of Avdievka last month after a fierce battle that included some behind enemy lines.

Kiev leaders, including President Volodymyr Zelensky, say supplies of vital anti-aircraft weapons are also increasingly in short supply, leaving the country’s civilians more vulnerable to incoming missiles and drones.

CIA Director William J. Burns appeared on Capitol Hill this week with other top U.S. intelligence officials, tell legislators With an uninterrupted infusion of U.S. military aid, “Ukraine can hold its own on the front lines next year” and continue attacking targets outside Russia and in the Black Sea. He warned that without U.S. weapons, Ukrainians would lose “significant positions.”

“The Ukrainians have not lost their courage and perseverance,” Burns said. “They are running out of ammunition. We are running out of time to help them.”

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By Ali Raza

I am a dedicated and skilled News Content Writer with a passion for delivering accurate and engaging stories to a diverse audience. With a solid background in journalism and a keen eye for detail, I bring a commitment to excellence and a deep understanding of the evolving media landscape.

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