US announces $425mn military assistance package for Ukraine

The US Department of Defense announced a new $300 million military assistance package for Ukraine in addition to a $125 million drawdown, according to a release.

“Today, the Department of Defense announced additional security assistance to meet Ukraine’s critical security and defense needs. This includes the drawdown of security assistance from DoD inventories valued at up to $125 million to meet Ukraine’s immediate battlefield needs, as well as $300 million in Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) funds to strengthen Ukraine’s air defenses over the long term,” the release stated.

The new package includes additional munitions for National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS), High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), 155mm and 105 mm artillery rounds, Javelin and AT-4 anti-armor systems, the release added.

The United States will also send Ukraine cold weather gear, 12 trucks to transport heavy equipment and spare parts, maintenance, and more than 3 million rounds of small arms ammunition and grenades, according to the release.

Earlier in the day, Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the US will provide Ukraine with an additional military aid package of arms and equipment worth $125 million.

“Today, the United States is announcing a new package of weapons and equipment to support the people of Ukraine as they defend their country and their freedom against Russia’s aggression. This package provides up to $125 million of arms and equipment authorized under previously directed drawdowns for Ukraine,” Blinken stated in a statement.

The new security aid announcement comes as Washington is struggling to keep up with growing demands to support its ally Israel in its fight against Hamas and Kiev amid its ongoing conflict with Russia. On Thursday, Pentagon press secretary Pat Ryder reiterated that the United States can handle both as well as continue to protect the homeland from all kinds of threats.

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