News ID: 97613
Publish Date : 11 December 2021 - 21:52

KIEV (Dispatches) – The United States has backtracked on a decision to provide Ukraine with a $200-million package of additional military aid, amid escalation of tensions between Kiev and Moscow.
Citing sources familiar with the matter, NBC reported on Saturday that the aid package was expected to be approved and announced last week, but instead the White House chose to postpone any final decision.
The decision was made despite Kiev’s appeal for military aid, as it keeps accusing Russia of massing troops near Ukraine’s border for a possible invasion. Russia says there is no such plan.
It is not known what the proposed $200-million aid package includes, but Ukraine has asked for air systems, anti-ship missiles, anti-tank missiles, electronic jamming gear, radar systems, ammunition, upgraded artillery munitions and medical supplies, according to the report.
Kiev, which had submitted its “urgent request” for military assistance a month ago, and received a positive response, is now frustrated, according to a person familiar with the Ukrainian government’s view. “There is slight frustration over this,” the source was quoted as saying.
The U.S., however, is considering a number of other options to provide further assistance to Ukraine, the report said.
The package would include a much larger aid that would be approved “in the event of further incursion by Russia,” it said.
Washington has already delivered about $400 million in military aid to Kiev so far in 2021.
The U.S. also threatened earlier this week that it would bolster its military presence on NATO’s “eastern flank” and inflict “severe economic harm” on Moscow “should Russia invade Ukraine.”
Tensions have been growing in recent months as Russia has amassed troops on the border with Ukraine. Moscow says its posture is purely defensive and comes in response to increased NATO activity there.
Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin has denounced the oppression against ethnic Russians in Ukraine’s east as “certainly looking like genocide.”
“I have to say that Russophobia is a first step toward genocide,” the Russian leader said.
“We see and know what is happening in the Donbass. It certainly looks like genocide,” he added, referring to the conflict zone in the east of the country.

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