President Joe Biden sent his secretary of state to Ukraine to announce $2 billion more in donated weaponry from U.S. taxpayers.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken explained the aid is designed to bolster defense in Ukraine and other Russian-menaced European countries.
The Associated Press further reported:
In meetings with senior Ukrainian officials, Blinken said the Biden administration had notified Congress of its intent to provide $2 billion in long-term Foreign Military Financing to Ukraine and 18 of its neighbors, including NATO members and regional security partners, that are “most potentially at risk for future Russian aggression.”
Pending expected congressional approval, about $1 billion of that will go to Ukraine and the rest will be divided among Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, the State Department said.
It will go to help those countries “deter and defend against emergent threats to their sovereignty and territorial integrity” by enhancing their military integration with NATO and countering “Russian influence and aggression,” the department said.
“This assistance demonstrates yet again our unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s future as a democratic, sovereign, and independent state, as well as the security of allies and partners across the region,” it said.
Foreign Military Financing, or FMF, allows recipients to purchase U.S.-made defense equipment, often depending on their specific needs.
The financing comes on top of a $675 million package of heavy weaponry, ammunition and armored vehicles for Ukraine alone that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced earlier Thursday at a conference in Ramstein, Germany.
That package includes howitzers, artillery munitions, Humvees, armored ambulances, anti-tank systems and more.
Thursday’s contributions bring total U.S. aid to Ukraine to $15.2 billion since Biden took office. U.S. officials said the new commitments were intended to show that American support for the country in the face of Russia’s invasion is unwavering.
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