Surprise visit by Antony Blinken, Secretary of State to Kiev in order to reveal the assistance package
The administration of US President Joe Biden has pledged another $2.2 billion in long-term military financing to Ukraine and 18 neighbor states and territories “Potentially in danger of Russian aggression future,” pending approval by Congress, Secretary of State Antony Blinken revealed on Thursday during an unannounced visit to Kiev.
Blinken met Vladimir Zelensky (President) and other high-ranking officials to talk about the details for the package of $2.2 billion, $1 billion of which will go to Ukraine. The rest will be divided among “Regional security partners” in order to help them “Protect and repel emerging threats to their sovereignty or territorial integrity” through strengthening their coordination with NATO and combating “Russian influence and aggression,” according to the State Department.
The remaining money is split between Albania, Bosnia and Bulgaria, Croatia (the Czech Republic), Estonia, Georgia. Latvia. Lithuania. Moldova, Montenegro. North Macedonia. Poland. Romania. Slovakia. Slovenia.
Pentagon announces new Ukraine weapon package
Blinken hailed the Ukrainian “Counteroffensive” against Russian forces in the south as “Effective,” calling it a “pivotal moment” for Kiev, while Zelensky thanked the visiting diplomat for “this enormous support that you’re providing on a day to day basis.”
The aid package was the second announced on Thursday, following on the heels of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s pledge of $675 million more in heavy weaponry, armored vehicles and ammunition to the Ukrainian war effort. The Dutch and German defense ministers joined Austin, offering training and additional equipment. Although the economic fallout from the anti-Russian sanctions has made the citizens of some European countries sour on the conflict as energy costs spiral out of control, their leaders have reassured Kiev they will maintain their support – against voters’ wishes, if need be.
As of August 3, the US had committed a total of $44.3 billion in aid to Ukraine since the launch of Russia’s military operation in February. Biden’s Democratic Party is expected to face tough midterm elections in November as polls indicate voters are much more concerned by inflation and other economic issues than the supposed Russian “danger.”