Biden Is Set To Unveil $1.3 Billion More in Aid for Ukraine

President Joe Biden said the U.S. is sending Ukraine another $1.3 billion in arms and economic aid, and that he’ll ask Congress to authorize further assistance as Russia steps up its attacks in the country’s east.

It is $2.4 billion more in U.S. Aid already approved for this fiscal year. Most of the money will be used to purchase weaponry. A new $800million package will be used to purchase arms.

Biden said that Russian-flagged ships will not be allowed in American ports. This was in response to a European move.

“We’re in a critical window now of time where they’re going to set the stage for the next phase of this war,” Biden said. “And the United States and our allies and partners are moving as fast as possible to continue to provide Ukraine the weapons they need, the equipment their forces need to defend their nation.”

Biden last week announced a package of aid that he said provided “new capabilities include artillery systems, artillery rounds, and armored personnel carriers,” as well as the transfer of additional helicopters.

Before his remarks, Biden met with Ukraine’s prime minister, Denys Shmyhal, at the White House.

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More than half a dozen flights bearing U.S. equipment will land in the Ukraine region “shortly,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Wednesday. That includes long-range weapons Kyiv is expected to need as the war shifts to Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region, which Russia seeks to capture after its offensive on Kyiv failed.

“It requires different kinds of weapons to be more effective,” Biden said Thursday. He said the U.S. will provide “dozens” of howitzers and 144,000 artillery shells.

Biden added that the battle of Kyiv “was a historic victory for the Ukrainians. It was a victory for freedom, won by the Ukrainian people with unprecedented assistance by the United States and our allies and our partners.”

On Thursday, senior administration officials detailed plans for up to 100,000 Ukrainians being allowed to enter the U.S.A. for up to two years. This is provided that they are accompanied by a sponsor or family member in Ukraine.

The program will provide an “expedient channel” for migration from Ukraine to the U.S., Biden said. “This program will be fast, it will be streamlined,” he said.

According to a senior official in the administration, Ukrainian nationals traveling to Mexico with the intention of entering the U.S. from the south border are not eligible for any preferential treatment. In recent months, about 50,000 Ukrainians entered the U.S. via Mexico.

A portal online for applying to the program will open on April 25.

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