Bipartisan group of U.S. senators introduce legislation to provide support for Ukraine

It encourages the U.S. Department of State to establish a working group on Ukraine with relevant European allies. REUTERS

REUTERS

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators on July 30 introduced legislation to provide support for Ukraine, authorizing up to US$300 million per year of foreign military financing. “U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) today introduced the Ukraine Security Partnership Act to provide security assistance and strategic support to Ukraine,” the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations said in a statement posted on its website on July 30.

The legislation authorizes up to US$300 million per year of foreign military financing to Ukraine, subject to certifications, including the authority to provide Ukraine with lethal military assistance.

It also requires the administration to appoint a special envoy for Ukraine to serve as the U.S. liaison for the Normandy Format peace negotiations and to facilitate dialogue between Black Sea countries.

In addition, it encourages the Department of State to establish a working group on Ukraine with relevant European allies. It also requires a Department of Defense and State Department report on the capability and capacity requirements of Ukraine’s armed forces, a plan to supply U.S. security assistance to Ukraine, and any recommendations. Besides, it authorizes US$4 million per year to train Ukrainian military officers through the International Military Education and Training.

“The U.S. is Ukraine’s strongest supporter, but its security needs continue to grow under relentless pressure from Moscow. The bipartisan Ukraine Security Partnership Act will address these challenges by substantially increasing long-term security assistance for our partners in Ukraine while ensuring accountability from their democratic institutions. U.S. security assistance for the people of Ukraine is the right thing to do.

It helps to advance our values and is in the national security interests of the United States. This bill shows that our commitment to Ukraine’s security should be unwavering and shielded from politics.

And I look forward to working to build support for this critical legislation in the Senate,” the statement quotes Menendez as saying. The Donald Trump Administration, in turn, welcomed an increase in the supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine in the defense budget for the financial year 2021. This decision was made by both the House of Representatives and the Senate, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the FY 2021 State Department budget request on July 30.

“The administration does support of the increase in lethal aid,” Pompeo told U.S. Senator Rob Portman at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing. “This administration has acted to protect our interests and our friends: We’ve issued the Crimea Declaration. We’ve supplied Ukraine with lethal military hardware. We’ve sanctioned more than 360 Russian targets for everything from human rights abuses, to supporting the murderous Assad regime, to operating mercenaries and proxy forces around the world,” he said.

According to him, “Russia is a destabilizing authoritarian force – in Ukraine, in Libya, in Syria, and inside of Western democracies.

” The Senate-passed FY 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes US$250 million in security assistance for Ukraine to fund additional training, lethal and non-lethal equipment, and advisory efforts for Ukraine’s forces. Specifically, US$125 million of that US$250 million is designated specifically for lethal assistance, an increase of US$75 million from FY20.

(C)UNIAN 2020

5 comments

  • ‘The U.S. is Ukraine’s strongest supporter, but its security needs continue to grow under relentless pressure from Moscow’.
    Exactly. Also, the pernicious effect of Russian propaganda needs to be addressed head on. Media outlets are swamped with drivel glorifying the tiny poisoner, yet virtually no one is aware of the terrible atrocities being committed on a daily basis by occupier scum.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Very nice but capping at 300M when it is already 250M doesn’t sound overwhelming. Also I would like to hear a plan for Crimea. I still believe the Donbas invasion was just a distraction from the real goal; buying time to ruSSify the next generation of Crimeans. 6 years on it appears everyone is still watching Vladolf’s shiny object.

      Liked by 4 people

      • More than two hundred countries receive U.S. aid. It disproportionately goes to a few, however, with the top five all receiving over $1 billion per year as of 2016: Iraq ($5.3 billion), Afghanistan ($5.1 billion), Israel ($3.1 billion), Egypt ($1.2 billion), and Jordan ($1.2 billion).

        This makes the aid to Ukraine look like crumbs from the table.

        Liked by 4 people

        • Indeed F1. I have written on this topic before. The money paid to Israel, Egypt and Jordan is worth every penny. Arabs only understand absolute rulers such as monarchs or military dictators and its crucial that secular ones such as these are supported, so that pisslamist ones don’t get the upper hand.
          Afghanistan and Iraq should not get anything except a lucrative commission (taking a leaf out of putler’s book) for every isis/AQ/Taliban/Russian merc killed. That’s all.
          I was in favour with the invasion of Afghanistan; what alternative was there? But west-friendly puppets should have been installed (another putler move), once the talibs had been kicked out of power.
          Similarly, with Iraq, I was in favour. Saddam was a genocidal monster; an arabised putler and he had to go. For gassing an entire Kurd village, as well as the rape rooms, torture rooms, poisonings and killings. The mistake was in allowing an Iran puppet regime to take power. The allies should have pushed on, taken out the Iran regime and replaced them with a new western-friendly Shah, which would have weakened putler’s influence in the region.

          Liked by 4 people

  • onlyfactsplease

    Once again it is our Congress that recognizes the needs of Ukraine and is ready to address the problem. It should also be the president’s job to assist a nation struggling not only with its still-young and inexperienced democracy, fight against corruption and other problematic issues but also against a large and aggressive monster to the east. I sometimes really hate the orange orangutang for ignoring Ukraine and for cozying up to his cock buddy Putin.

    Liked by 3 people

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