May 29th, 2024

Pentagon set to send $1 billion in military aid to Ukraine once bill clears Senate, Biden

By Lolita C. Baldor And Aamer Madhani, The Associated Press on April 23, 2024.

This photo, provided by head of the Odesa Regional Military Administration Oleh Kiper, firefighters work on the site of a damaged building after a Russian drone attack in Odesa, Ukraine, Tuesday, April 23, 2024. (Head of the Odesa Regional Military Administration Oleh Kiper via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. officials say the Pentagon is poised to send a $1 billion package of military aid to Ukraine as the Senate begin debate on long-awaited legislation to fund the weapons Kyiv desperately needs to stall gains being made by Russian forces in the war.

The decision Tuesday comes after months of frustration, as bitterly divided members of Congress deadlocked over the funding. House Speaker Mike Johnson was forced to cobble together a dramatic bipartisan coalition to pass the bill. The $95 billion foreign aid package is now expected to gain Senate approval soon. About $61 billion of the aid is for Ukraine.

The announcement reflects President Joe Biden’s promise Monday in a call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy saying that the U.S. would send the badly needed air defense weapons once the Senate approved the bill. Zelensky said in a posting on X, formerly Twitter, that Biden also assured him that a coming package of aid would also include long-range and artillery capabilities.

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