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Biden announces $150 million security package to Ukraine

The latest package is for $150 million worth of equipment including 25,000 155mm artillery rounds, counter-artillery radars, jamming equipment and field equipment and spare parts, a White House official said.

The new security assistance package follows the President’s $33 billion proposal last week to Congress to support Ukraine amid Russia’s invasion. The US has made it clear it intends to provide long-term support to Ukraine and has already provided the nation with billions of dollars in military and humanitarian assistance. The proposed package last week was more than twice as much as the $13.6 billion infusion of military and humanitarian aid that Congress approved last month.

In a statement, Biden said the administration has nearly exhausted funding that can be used for security assurance and called on Congress to approve his request for additional money for Ukraine.

“With today’s announcement, my Administration has nearly exhausted funding that can be used to send security assistance through drawdown authorities for Ukraine,” the statement reads. “For Ukraine to succeed in this next phase of war its international partners, including the US, must continue to demonstrate our unity and our resolve to keep the weapons and ammunition flowing to Ukraine, without interruption.”

“Congress should quickly provide the requested funding to strengthen Ukraine on the battlefield and at the negotiating table,” Biden added.

Biden is set to speak with other G7 leaders virtually on Sunday ahead of expected “Victory Day” celebrations in Russia, which takes place each year on May 9. Victory Day is a prominent holiday on the Russian calendar that marks the Nazi surrender in World War II and is typically celebrated with a huge parade of troops and weaponry across Red Square in front of the Kremlin.

Reuters was first to report on the upcoming assistance package.
The President said the $33 billion package would provide more artillery, armored vehicles, anti-armor systems and anti-aircraft capabilities to the Ukrainian military, as well as humanitarian assistance, including food, water, medicine and shelter to Ukrainians displaced by the war. The package includes more than $20 billion for military and security assistance.

The US remains in close coordination with European allies. The President last week said the US was working with other nations — including Korea, Japan and Qatar — to support European allies being threatened by Russia suspending their natural gas supplies.

The President has also proposed strengthening US law enforcement capabilities to seize property linked to Russia’s kleptocracy. The goal is to further pressure Russian oligarchs and use money from their seized assets, including superyachts, to fund Ukraine’s defense.

The ratcheting up in military assistance from the US comes as Russia refocuses its campaign to seize new territory in the country’s eastern region. The President recently said Russia’s war has entered a “critical window,” making Western military aid all the more essential.

This story has been updated with additional information.

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