As Ukraine war enters third year, US aid hangs in balance : The Tribune India

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As Ukraine war enters third year, US aid hangs in balance

As Ukraine war enters third year, US aid hangs in balance

Ukrainian soldiers operate an anti-aircraft gun in Odesa. REUTERS



Washington, February 22

As the Russia-Ukraine war enters its third year, Top Biden administration officials spent last weekend in Europe trying to soothe jitters over the prospect of US military aid to Ukraine ending, assuring counterparts from Paris, Berlin and Kyiv that Washington will somehow come through.

Just two days later, the Republican Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Mike Johnson, who has so far blocked passage of a bill that includes $60 billion in new funding for Ukraine, posted a picture of himself smiling with former Republican President Donald Trump, who has opposed aid for Kyiv.

The contrast underscored the challenges facing the Biden administration if Congress failed to approve more military assistance, which Ukraine desperately needed to hold off Russian invaders. So far, President Joe Biden’s administration has ruled out discussing a plan B.

Trump, frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination and a long-standing critic of the NATO alliance, has in recent weeks threatened to abandon some European allies if they were to be attacked by Russia. The Senate last week approved a $95 billion bill providing assistance for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan by an overwhelming 70-30 vote, with 22 Republicans joining most Democrats in voting ‘aye’. But Johnson sent the House home for a two-week recess without bringing the measure up for a vote. Since then, Senate Republicans and Democrats have joined those urging passage of the aid.

If approved, the funding would bring the total US investment in the conflict to $170 billion, although Congress has not approved any major aid for Ukraine since Republicans took control of the House in January 2023. — Reuters

UK announces new Russia sanctions

London: Britain announced a new package of sanctions against Russia on Thursday, saying it was seeking to diminish President Vladimir Putin's weapons arsenal and war chest two years after the invasion of Ukraine. The package covers more than 50 individuals and entities.

Kyiv desperate for soldiers; moots unpopular legislation

  • Ukrainian parliament is considering legislation that would increase the potential pool of recruits by about 4,00,000, in part by lowering the enlistment age from 27 to 25, even as many men are showing unwillingness to join the battle
  • The proposal is highly unpopular, forcing officials to grapple with questions that cut to the heart of nationhood: can they convince enough citizens to sacrifice their lives? And, if not, are they willing to accept the alternative?

#Europe #Russia #Ukraine #United States of America USA #Washington


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