The United States President, Joe Biden, has announced the dispatch of a new weapons package worth $150million to Ukraine for the country to repel Russia’s invasion.
“I am announcing another package of security assistance that will provide additional artillery munitions, radars, and other equipment to Ukraine,” AFP quoted him as saying.
Biden further warned that funding was close to running out as he urged Congress to authorise a huge $33billion Ukraine package, which would include $20billion in military assistance, and last for five months.
Meanwhile, a senior US official said the package includes 25,000 155mm artillery rounds, counter-artillery radars used for detecting the source of enemy fire, electronic jamming equipment, and spare parts.
The artillery munitions appear to be meant for recently supplied US howitzers.
The US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, said the new batch brings the total value of US weaponry sent by the Biden administration to Ukraine to $3.8billion since Russia launched its invasion on February 24.
Friday’s package means the remaining $250million available from previously authorised funding for Ukraine will have all but run out.
Biden and the rest of the G7 leaders, plus Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky, are meeting virtually on Sunday to discuss Western support for the country in its struggle against President Vladimir Putin’s invasion.
“The United States has provided a historic amount of security assistance to Ukraine at rapid speed. We are sending the weapons and equipment that Congress has authorized directly to the front lines of freedom in Ukraine,” Biden said in a statement.
However, Biden said current funding was nearly exhausted adding that for Ukraine to succeed, the United States and its allies must “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,” he said.