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US finds money for another Ukraine aid package – Reuters

The Biden administration has reportedly tapped up to $400 million in “credits” to send more weapons to Kiev

US President Joe Biden’s administration has reportedly put together $400 million in funding for weapons for Ukraine, the first such package in months. Those in favor of continued funding for Kiev’s military have struggled to secure congressional approval for more expenditure.

The new aid package comprises “credits refunded to the Pentagon for recent purchases,” Reuters reported on Tuesday, citing two unidentified US officials. The White House ran out of money for Ukraine in January, after burning through $113 billion in congressionally approved aid packages.

Republican lawmakers have balked at approving Biden’s request for a $95 billion emergency spending bill that includes more than $60 billion for Ukraine. The US president has blamed Republicans for Ukraine’s recent struggles on the battlefield, arguing that the key Donbass stronghold of Avdeevka fell to Russian forces last month because Kiev’s troops had to ration their ammunition.

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Pentagon reveals $10 billion arms ‘hole’ due to Ukraine – media

CIA director Bill Burns warned members of the US Senate Intelligence Committee on Monday that failure to approve additional aid funding for Ukraine would lead to “more Avdeevkas.” He added, “That, it seems to me, would be a massive and historic mistake for the United States.” He also claimed that if the US can provide enough weapons, Ukrainian forces can “regain the offensive initiative” by late 2024 or early 2025.

Biden’s likely challenger in this year’s presidential election, presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, has vowed to quickly end the Russia-Ukraine conflict by forcing the leaders of both countries to the negotiating table. Trump’s plan for ending the crisis includes halting aid to Kiev, according to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who met with the former US president on Friday.

“Donald Trump will not give a penny to the Ukraine-Russia war,” Orban told Hungarian broadcaster M1 on Sunday. He added that European allies would not be able to fund the conflict if Ukraine’s biggest benefactor, Washington, stops sending weapons.

READ MORE: Biden considers sending US Army’s money to Ukraine – Bloomberg

The latest assessment of US national security threats, based on input from Washington’s 18 spy agencies, said Russian President Vladimir Putin “probably believes” his strategy for victory in Ukraine is paying off and that Western aid to Kiev will wane. The report conceded that Russian forces have been making battlefield gains in the former Soviet republic since late last year and are benefiting from “uncertainties about the future of Western military assistance.”



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