Biden Admin urges Congress to approve critical assistance package for Ukraine

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Washington, United States: The Biden Administration, on Monday, urged Congress to approve the military as well as economic assistance for Ukraine, worth tens of billions of dollars. The US officials have expressed that if the assistance is not approved, then Russia’s efforts to defend itself from the Russian attack might grind to a halt, according to the reports by the Associated Press.

Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young wrote a letter to the House and Senate, which was later released in the public domain, expressing that the United States will only have funding by the end of this year. She noted that it “would kneecap Ukraine on the battlefield.”

Furthermore, she expressed that the money kept by the United States to sustain the economy of Ukraine has already finished and “if Ukraine’s economy collapses, they will not be able to keep fighting, full stop,” according to reports by AP.

She added, “We are out of money — and nearly out of time.”

US President Joe Biden | Credits: Getty Images
US President Joe Biden | Credits: Getty Images

Biden assistance package for Ukraine, Israel

According to the official reports, US President Joe Biden has sought an aid package of around US$106 billion for Ukraine and Israel. However, it has encountered a challenging reception on Capitol Hill. There is increasing skepticism regarding the extent of support for Ukraine. Even Republicans who are in favor of the funding are demanding changes to the US-Mexico border policy to address the flow of migrants as a condition for providing assistance.

Moreover, the assistance package for Israel has been passed by the House of Republicans, but the White House has expressed that all the priorities must be met.

In addition to this, around US$111 billion has been allocated by Congress. Out of the total, US$10 billion was for humanitarian aid, US$27 billion was for economic as well as civil assistance, and the remaining US$67 billion was for military assistance.

According to the letter by Young, all the allocated funds were finished by mid-November, except for 3 percent of the military funding.  

Slowed the pace of funding

In this regard, the Biden Administration has recently expressed that the pace of offering funding and assistance to Ukraine has slowed down so that funds can be given until the funding is approved by Congress.

Flags of Israel, Ukraine and the United States | Credits: Dreamstime
Flags of Israel, Ukraine and the United States | Credits: Dreamstime

The letter by Young further expressed, “We are out of money to support Ukraine in this fight. This isn’t a problem next year. The time to help a democratic Ukraine fight against Russian aggression is right now. It is time for Congress to act.”

The letter came after a confidential briefing on Capitol Hill on November 29, where the key leaders in the House and Senate were briefed on the need for assistance. During this briefing, top Defense and national security officials updated the “big four” congressional leaders. This occurred amid ongoing discussions in Congress regarding President Joe Biden’s comprehensive funding package of nearly US$106 billion. Notably, this package allocates US$61 billion for Ukraine but has encountered complications due to Republican calls for changes in US-Mexico border security.

During an interview with the Associated Press, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer stated, “It is clear that Ukraine needs the aid soon — and so does our military need the aid soon.”