Blinken announces $2 billion in military aid for Ukraine

KYIV   -  US Secretary of State Antony Blinken concluded his trip to Kyiv on Wednesday, where he reaffirmed the Biden administration’s support for Ukraine as Russia’s advances continue in the Kharkiv region of the country.

Earlier Wednesday, Blinken announced $2 billion in foreign military financing for Ukraine and said much-needed ammunition and weapons are being rushed to the front lines. The US State Department acknowledged that the $2 billion in foreign military financing is coming primarily from the recently passed Ukraine Security supplemental and $400 million of it is coming from existing Foreign Military Financing (FMF) that had not previously been allocated to Ukraine. Blinken also said that the US remains “committed” to helping Ukraine win the war against Russia, but it is not encouraging strikes on Russian territory.

Blinken added that Washington strongly supports a Ukrainian peace summit set to take place next month in Switzerland. Ukrainian officials suggested further gains by Russian forces on Wednesday in the Kharkiv region, as Moscow continues its push into northeastern Ukraine. The town of Vovchansk, located about 60 kilometers (or about 37 miles) northeast of Ukraine’s second-largest city of Kharkiv, is seeing some of the most intense battles in areas near the border, with one police official saying Russian forces are already in the town. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the US remains “committed” to helping Ukraine win the war against Russia, but it is not encouraging strikes on Russian territory. “We’ve not encouraged or enabled strikes outside Ukraine but ultimately Ukraine has to make decisions for itself about how it’s going to conduct this war, a war it’s conducting in defense of its freedom, of its sovereignty, of its territorial integrity and we’ll continue to back Ukraine with the equipment it needs to succeed,” Blinken said on Wednesday during a joint news conference with Ukrainian Foreign Minster Dmytro Kuleba in Kyiv.

Blinken also announced that the US will provide an additional $2 billion in foreign military financing for Ukraine, adding “we put this together in a first-of-itskind defense enterprise fund.”

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