The United States announced on Tuesday a new military aid package for Ukraine valued at 1.2 billion dollars and whose objective is to strengthen Ukrainian air defenses against continuous Russian attacks with drones, rockets and missiles.
In a statement, the Pentagon said in a statement that the aid package includes more air defense systems and 155-millimeter artillery ammunitionin addition to ammunition intended to shoot down drones.
The United States will also send equipment to Ukraine to integrate Western missile launchers and radar with Ukraine’s existing air defense systems, the Pentagon said in a statement.
The shipments will be made through the so-called Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), a program authorized by Congress that allows the United States to allocate military equipment using private contractors, instead of going to its own inventory.
With this package, the United States has already sent Ukraine some $37 billion in military aid since Russia began its invasion in February 2022.
Ukrainian President, Volodimir Zelenskyalready expressed his gratitude on Twitter to the United States for the military aid package: “Thank you to the president and the people of the United States for the powerful defense assistance package of 1,200 million dollars.”
The Ukrainian leader described this new aid consignment as a “sign of solidarity”, and recalled that it is announced on the day that Europe Day is celebrated and the victory in 1945 over Nazi Germany is commemorated.
“Together we move towards a new victory!”Zelensky wrote.
Earlier, the president of the European Commission (EC), Ursula von der Leyen, had ratified from Kiev her support for the creation of a special court to judge Russia’s war crimes in Ukraine, a role that, she added, will correspond to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
“We work daily to collect evidence and record all crimes”he said, after meeting in the Ukrainian capital with Zelensky to insist that the objective is to “do justice” and “make sure that war criminals” will not escape it.
The president of the EC referred there to the creation of what she called an International Center for the prosecution of the war of aggression against Ukraine, integrated into a joint investigation team.
Von der Leyen thus picked up on the claim expressed last week by Zelensky himself during his visit to the ICC headquarters in The Hague and his allusion to the recognition of the war of aggression launched by Russia to avoid other future wars of aggression.
During her visit to Kiev, the president of the community executive advanced that the EC is working on a new package of sanctions that will include new mechanisms to guarantee that Russia and its allies do not manage to circumvent those that are already in force.
“The focus of this package is to end the evasion of these sanctions”said Von der Leyen in reference to the eleventh European package of sanctions proposed last Friday by the Commission.
Among the novelties of this new package, the president highlighted the inclusion of “advanced technology products and aircraft components”, which cannot enter Russia even if their final destination is in other countries. “They will no longer end up in the hands of the Kremlin,” she said of the effects of the move.
Von der Leyen explained that the Commission has recently identified “a very unusual increase in EU trade flows with certain third countries.” “These goods end up in Russia”said the president of the EC.
“If we see that the products that go from the EU to third countries end up in Russia, we can propose to the Member States that they sanction the export of these products,” announced Von der Leyen, who stressed that this new instrument will be used with “caution.”
The new package also provides for sanctions against “ghost entities from Russia and third countries that intentionally evade our sanctions,” explained the president of the community executive.
(With information from EFE)
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