US Sending Ukraine $275M Military Aid 12/09 06:08
The U.S. is sending an additional $275 million in military aid to Ukraine,
including large amounts of ammunition and high-tech systems that can be used to
detect and counter drones in its ongoing war with Russia, according to U.S.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. is sending an additional $275 million in
military aid to Ukraine, including large amounts of ammunition and high-tech
systems that can be used to detect and counter drones in its ongoing war with
Russia, according to U.S. officials.
The total aid amount is smaller than most of the recent packages the U.S.
has delivered, and it comes as many military officials and experts predict a
reduction in attacks during the winter. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg
said Russia appears to be slowing its military activities to regroup and launch
a new offensive when the weather warms.
The officials said the latest package of aid includes 80,000 rounds of
ammunition for howitzers and an undisclosed amount of ammunition for the High
Mobility Artillery Rocket System, known as HIMARS. It also includes systems to
counter drones and air defenses, along with more HUMVEES, generators and other
combat equipment. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the
aid package prior to its public release, which is expected Friday.
Drone attacks by both sides have been increasing, making detection of the
unmanned explosives critical for Ukrainian forces. Russia bought hundreds of
attack drones from Iran over the summer, and officials said this week that
Moscow is looking to do more of the same.
Russian forces have increasingly targeted Ukraine's civilian infrastructure
including power plants, leaving thousands without heat and electricity as the
winter months set in.
In addition, several recent drone attacks struck two strategic Russian air
bases more than 500 kilometers (300 miles) from the Ukraine border early this
week. Moscow blamed Ukraine, which didn't claim responsibility.
Including the latest aid, the U.S. has now committed more than $19.3 billion
in weapons and other equipment to Ukraine since Russia attacked on Feb. 24. The
aid will be provided through presidential drawdown authority, which allows the
Pentagon to take weapons from its own stocks and quickly ship them to Ukraine.