The us president Biden, announced Thursday it will send another $600 million in military aid to Ukraine, as the U.S. rushes more weapons to fuel Kyiv’s counteroffensive that has reclaimed large stretches of the embattled country and forced Russian troops to retreat.
According to the White House, the Defense Department had taken equipment and weaponry off the shelves for delivery to Ukraine for the twenty-first time.
More of the same kinds of weapons and gear that have helped Ukrainian forces repel Russian forces in parts of the east and south will be part of the package.
The decision to move on new aid quickly — on the heels of a nearly $2.9 billion infusion of aid and financing support announced last week, and more than $3 billion announced in late August — underscore the U.S. intent to ensure that Ukraine can sustain its stunning counterattack that was launched early this month.
That most recent funding included $2.2 billion in long-term military financing announced that Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced during a visit to Ukraine last week, and a $675 million weapons package announced by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in Europe that same day.
The $2.2 billion that Blinken announced in Kyiv is for Ukraine and 18 of its neighbors, including NATO members and regional security partners, that are potentially at risk of future Russian aggression, the U.S. said.
Moscow’s recent rout in northeast Ukraine was its largest military defeat since the withdrawal of Russian troops from areas near Kyiv more than five months ago.
The latest package of weapons systems brings the total amount of U.S. aid to Ukraine to nearly $15.9 billion since President Joe Biden took office.
U.S. officials watching the counteroffensive have been careful not to declare a premature victory, noting that Russia still has substantial troops and resources. And they are wary of what Russian President Vladimir Putin may do to turn the tide.
But U.S. leaders also have made clear that the precision weapons and rocket systems provided by the U.S. and allies — including the High-Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, and the High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile, or HARM — have been key to the dramatic shift in momentum.