KYIV - US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin made an unannounced visit to Kyiv on Monday, in a bid to stem Ukrainian concerns that support from its biggest ally could waver.
The United States has provided over $40 billion of security aid to Ukraine since Russia’s invasion and pledged to back Kyiv for “as long as it takes,” but opposition from hardline Republicans has raised doubts about the future of American assistance.
Austin “travelled to Ukraine today to meet with Ukrainian leaders and reinforce the staunch support of the United States for Ukraine’s fight for freedom,” the Pentagon said in a statement on the trip, which was not previously announced for security reasons.
“He will also underscore the continued US commitment to providing Ukraine with the security assistance it needs to defend itself from Russian aggression,” it said.
The trip to Kyiv is the Pentagon chief’s second since Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.