US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin Reaffirms Support for Ukraine Amid Congressional Funding Delay

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin reiterated the United States’ unwavering commitment to Ukraine during the 20th meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base in Germany. Despite ongoing delays in critical funding for Ukraine aid by Congress, Austin emphasized that the US will not let Ukraine fail.

Key Points:

  1. Solidarity with Ukraine: Austin emphasized that the US stands firmly alongside Ukraine in its defense against Russian aggression. He highlighted Ukraine’s resilience and determination in the face of adversity, stating that the US and its allies are united in ensuring Ukraine’s success.
  2. Dire Situation in Ukraine: Amid reports of Ukraine’s critical shortage of ammunition and being heavily outgunned by Russian forces, Austin acknowledged the challenges Ukraine faces on the battlefield. He stressed the urgency of providing support to Ukraine to bolster its defense capabilities.
  3. Russian Losses and Costs: Austin pointed to significant losses suffered by Russia since the conflict began, including casualties and financial expenditures. He underscored Ukraine’s success in thwarting Russian military efforts and inflicting damage on Russian naval vessels and aircraft.
  4. Congressional Funding Delay: The future of supplemental aid for Ukraine in Congress remains uncertain. Despite House Speaker Mike Johnson’s commitment to finding a path forward for Ukraine aid, there are ongoing challenges in securing additional funding.
  5. Pentagon’s Aid Package: In the absence of congressional funding, the Pentagon announced a $300 million aid package for Ukraine. While this is a significant measure, officials acknowledge that it is not enough to sustain Ukraine’s defense efforts in the long term.
  6. Continued Support: Austin reiterated the US’s commitment to standing together with Ukraine and its allies to resist Russian aggression. He emphasized the importance of maintaining solidarity with Ukraine and ensuring its survival in the face of ongoing threats.
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