Antony Blinken adds another billion to the aid package
Ukraine is set to receive a new aid package worth over a billion dollars from the United States, as promised by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken during his visit to the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, as reported by Reuters. Blinken stated, “We stand with Ukraine,” and also held discussions with the Ukrainian president.
The aid package includes equipment useful for mine clearance, which Ukraine greatly needs due to Russian mines posing a significant obstacle to the progress of its counteroffensive, which hasn’t gone as smoothly as Ukraine had hoped. Nevertheless, Blinken referred to “significant progress” on the front lines in Kyiv, which he found “very, very encouraging.”
During his visit, Blinken took his Ukrainian counterpart, Dmytro Koeleba, to a fast-food restaurant, McDonald’s. In footage from the American news channel C-Span, Koeleba says, “As a student, this was my favorite hangover food.” Blinken replied, “I’m sure that didn’t happen very often.”
The majority of Ukraine’s war support comes from the United States. Estimates of the total amount of American aid vary, but according to various international organizations, it amounts to tens of billions of dollars.
On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Defense also announced that Ukraine would receive $175 million worth of ammunition, including rounds for HIMARS rocket systems and tank ammunition with depleted uranium. Russian President Vladimir Putin previously referred to such ammunition as “weapons with a nuclear component,” but the metal is more toxic than radioactive. It is not clear whether this ammunition package is part of the billion-dollar aid announced by Blinken.