WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced an additional $800 million in military assistance to Ukraine amid warnings that Russian forces are preparing to intensify attacks in the coming days.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February, the total military aid given to Ukraine tops $2.5 billion. This newest package includes artillery systems, artillery rounds, armored personnel carriers, weapons, and other assistance.
The President announced the package following a phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy that lasted 58 minutes.
“We cannot rest now. As I assured President Zelenskyy, the American people will continue to stand with the brave Ukrainian people in their fight for freedom,” Biden said in a statement.
— Stephen Michael (@stephenreports) April 13, 2022
The news comes following an investigation by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe finding Russia committed human rights abuses and broken international humanitarian law in its invasion of Ukraine.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said some of the equipment provided will require training for Ukrainian forces to use the American military equipment.
“We’re aware of the clock and we know time is not our friend,” Kirby said.
Zelenskyy had been pleading with the United States and its allies to send more aid to Ukraine following Russia’s attack on civilians.
“Arm Ukraine now to defend freedom,” Zelensky said in a video message posted in English Wednesday.
Speaking in Iowa on Tuesday, Biden slammed Putin for his war in Ukraine affecting economies around the world, resulting in gas prices spiking in the U.S. and around the globe.
“Your family budget, your ability to fill up your tank, none of it should hinge on whether a dictator declares war and commits genocide half a world away,” said Biden.
That marked the first time the President had used the term to define what is happening in Ukraine.
The official definition of “genocide” by the United States is “an act against members of a national, ethnic, racial or religious group with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part.”
“Yes, I called it genocide because it’s become clearer and clearer that Putin is just trying to wipe out the idea of even being Ukrainian,” the President said. “It’s a horrible thing that the Russians have done in Ukraine.”