As Russia gears up for new assaults expected to target southern Ukraine, U.S. President Joe Biden is planning to send an additional $1 billion in military aid to Ukraine.
The package includes long-range weapons, according to Reuters, which cautioned that the package is not final and could change.
If the package is assembled as expected, it would bring the total amount of U.S. aid linked to the Ukraine war up to about $9.8 billion.
The new military equipment would be funded through the presidential drawdown authority, which allows a president to act without Congress during an emergency. The White House declined to comment on the Reuters report.
Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24. Although initial assaults on Kyiv were repulsed, Russia had greater success in establishing a foothold in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine.
The war is now shifting, according to Fox News.
“Russian forces are almost certainly massing in the south in anticipation of Ukraine’s counter-offensive or in preparation for a possible assault,” Britain’s Defence Ministry said in an assessment.
“Long convoys of Russian military trucks, tanks, towed artillery and other weapons continue to move away from Ukraine’s Donbas region and are headed southwest,” the British report said.
The new U.S. weapons package comes on top of a $550 million batch of weaponry given to Ukraine last week that included ammunition for high-mobility artillery rocket systems, a key part of Ukraine’s defense in what has become a grinding war of attrition.
The new package would include ammunition for HIMARS and surface-to-air missile systems as well as 50 armored medical transports.
Should we stop funding Ukraine’s defense?
The Institute for the Study of War, citing Ukrainian officials, said that Russia is deploying Iranian drones in an effort to fight back against high-tech American weaponry.
As the war continues, Russia is working to annex the land it holds in Ukraine, according to The Washington Post.
Political analyst Tatiana Stanovaya said Russia is laying the groundwork to get what it wants.
“The so-called party of war believes that Russia should annex these territories, that it is part of Russia historically and so it must be returned. For them, it’s inevitable,” she said.
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