US to supply military equipment worth $200mn to Ukrainetext_fields
Washington: Fresh after the US administration's request to the US Congress for additional funding to help Ukraine's resistance against Russia, the US decided to equip Russia's rival with an additional package worth $200 million of military equipment.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said n a statement on Monday that items in the latest package include air defence munitions, artillery rounds, anti-armor capabilities, and additional mine-clearing equipment, reports Xinhua news agency.
In a press release containing a detailed list of equipment being supplied to Ukraine, the Pentagon said this is the 44th tranche of equipment for Ukraine that's going to be extracted from Department of Defense inventories since August 2021.
The latest assistance, the release said, will utilise assistance previously authorised by Biden under Presidential Drawdown Authority for Ukraine that remained after a revaluation process concluded in June to determine what went wrong in an inconsistency in calculating the value of military equipment sent to Ukraine.
According to reports from the Pentagon, more than $15 billion in weapons and equipment have been supplied from its stocks to Ukraine since the Russian invasion, and has committed an additional $6.2 billion in supplies that haven't yet been identified
The Pentagon admitted that an accounting error resulted in an overestimation of $6.2 billion in the value of weapons packages provided to Ukraine during a two-year period ending September 30 this year.
Adding Monday's announced assistance to the sum, the Biden administration has committed $43.7 billion in security assistance for Ukraine since it came to office in January 2021, including $43 billion since Russia launched its war against Ukraine on February 24, 2022, the Pentagon said in a separate statement.
In another development, on August 10,the Biden administration asked Congress to approve $24 billion for Ukraine.
The request was contained in a spending package totaling about $40 billion that also included $4 billion for border security and $12 billion related to disaster relief.
Biden has vowed to assist Ukraine "as long as it takes", but his administration's relentless spending on Ukraine has faced opposition in Congress, especially from far-right Republicans who argued against aiding Ukraine indefinitely.
Pressure is mounting on the Biden administration to ensure transparency in the taxpayer-supported Ukraine aid money, with Republicans -- and even some progressive Democrats -- urging stringent audit.
In a sign of sharp partisan divide on the issue, though, Senate Democrats last month blocked an amendment to the fiscal year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act that would create a new office conducting oversight into military assistance for Ukraine.
(Input from IANS)