Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin visited Ukraine on Monday, when he’ll meet with Ukrainian officers to relay a message of team spirit with the Ukrainian folks and that America stands firmly on the aid of the Jap European country in its war with Russia.
After an 11-hour educate toddle from Poland to Ukraine, Austin exited onto the platform, the build he shook hands with U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink. U.S. Defense Attaché Brig. Gen. Kipling Kahler was additionally uncover to greet him.
“I true arrived in Kyiv to satisfy with Ukrainian leaders,” Austin wrote on the social media build X. “I’m right here this day to raise a very most important message – the usa will proceed to stand with Ukraine of their battle for freedom in opposition to Russia’s aggression, each and each now and into the future.”
The budge is Secretary Austin’s second to Ukraine since Russia invaded in February 2022. His final budge to was in April 2022.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, upright, shakes hands with U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink in Ukraine on Nov. 20, 2023. (Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin/ X)
The Division of Defense launched an announcement confirming Austin would meet with Ukrainian leaders to bolster the U.S.-Ukrainian relationship.
“For the length of his budge to, Secretary Austin will have interaction in high-stage talks with Ukrainian management. The discussions will take care of additional bolstering the strategic partnership between the usa and Ukraine, to consist of ensuring Ukraine’s armed forces bring together the battlefield capabilities they need for every and each the cool weather and to defend their country in opposition to future Russian threats,” the Defense Division acknowledged.
It added, “Later this week, Secretary Austin will additionally host the 17th meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Community simply about from the Pentagon, persevering with the most important work of world coordination and supplies a boost to for Ukraine with simply about 50 countries expected to participate.”
The head of European Affirm/NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander, U.S. Well-liked Christopher Cavoli is additionally on the budge.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks at some level of a press briefing after a virtual Ukraine Defense Contact Community meeting on the Pentagon on Nov. 16, 2022, in Arlington, Virginia. The Ukraine Defense Contact Community met again to discuss relieve for Ukraine amid Russia’s invasion. (Alex Wong/Getty Photos)
Austin’s budge to Ukraine comes as the Pentagon continues to induce Congress — the Republican-led Dwelling of Representatives and the Democratic-controlled Senate — to budge extra funding to present a boost to Ukraine’s armed forces effort.
“I am happy that the passage of one other persevering with resolution has build off the likelihood of a lapse of funding,” Austin acknowledged Friday, Nov. 17. “Its enactment will derive definite that our brave troops and devoted civilian group will be paid through the holidays. But I proceed to induce Congress to budge elephantine-yr appropriations, which remains the one component that Congress can stay for our national defense. As we bring together now long made sure, running beneath short-term persevering with resolutions hamstrings the Division’s folks and applications and undermines each and each our national security and competitiveness.”
He added, “I additionally lumber Congress to absorb and budge supplemental funding to present a boost to our national security as rapidly as likely. Our supplemental build a matter to of straight supports our allies and companions, including Israel and Ukraine, at some level of a critical duration and makes key investments in our defense industrial spoiled all over the country. These investments will indicate higher prosperity at house and better security in one other country.”
“I proceed to stand ready to work with Congress to preserve America real and tough.”
Prior to now, Ukraine has obtained bigger than $44 billion from the U.S. and bigger than $35 billion from various allies in weapons, ranging from hundreds and hundreds of bullets to air defense methods, developed European and U.S. battle tanks and pledges for F-16 fighter jets.
Alternatively, Ukraine serene wants more.
A girl sings the national anthem of Ukraine at some level of an illustration in central Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023. Of us gathered to verbalize in opposition to corruption and build a matter to of the reallocation of public funds to the armed forces. (AP Photo/Alex Babenko)
On Thursday, Deputy Pentagon press secretary Sabrina Singh held a press briefing the build she acknowledged the Pentagon has been rolling out smaller weapons programs for Ukraine due to the uncertainty on Capitol Hill.
When requested for a preview of the next Ukraine Defense Contact Community meeting, an alliance of 54 countries that meet monthly for updates on the unusual battle with Russia, Singh acknowledged an announcement was expected within the following couple of days.
“With regards to relieve programs, that you can bring together considered us roll out objective consistently, relieve programs for Ukraine. Now we bring together had to budge down our give a boost to and our security assistance for Ukraine because we don’t desire extra funding, since the supplemental hasn’t been handed. So we true rolled out our final presidential drawdown authority, and I imagine that was final week,” the deputy press secretary persevered.
Singh added, “Peep what we’re when we’re ready to roll out the next one. We undoubtedly will. Everybody knows that Ukraine continues to face and continues to endeavor and its counteroffensive, and they need persevered give a boost to on a traditional basis. So all of us know that we bring together now to entire that. Everybody knows that we bring together now to proceed to satisfy their wants. And that’s the reason one thing that undoubtedly will be discussed on the next Ukraine Defense Contact Community. Nonetheless by methodology of a kit preview, I true build no longer need more for you to say this day.”
A reporter on the press briefing additionally requested how long the Pentagon can present a boost to Ukraine till Congress desires to relevant unusual funding.
“You bring together considered smaller programs, because we bring together now to parse these out,” Singh acknowledged Thursday. “Because we don’t know when Congress is going to budge our supplemental kit. I indicate, frankly, that’s why we requested an emergency supplemental kit to invent funding for our security assistance to Ukraine and additionally to backfill our have shares.”
A Ukrainian soldier of a tank unit of the 63rd Brigade, is considered in a tank in a rear blueprint within the path of Lyman-Kreminna, Ukraine on Nov. 16, 2023. (Diego Herrera Carcedo/Anadolu through Getty Photos)
The Pentagon can send about $5 billion more in weapons and equipment from its have shares; on the other hand, it only has about $1 billion in funding to interchange these shares.
“The supplemental, again, is in Congress. We proceed to induce Congress to budge a supplemental kit together because or no longer it’s an emergency build a matter to of. Or no longer it’s no longer a part of the budget route of. And so we bring together now a tall amount that we need Congress to authorize for Ukraine and for Israel. And for our investments within the Indo-Pacific and, obviously, for our have investments in our defense industrial spoiled. In insist that’s one thing that we will proceed to induce Congress to budge. Nonetheless you would additionally very successfully be exclusively upright. You bring together considered smaller programs because we bring together now to budge these out because we don’t know when Congress is going to budge our supplemental kit. And so we’re persevering with to chat with allies and companions. We’re no longer the one country right here contributing to Ukraine’s urgent battlefield wants. As , the Ukraine contact Community is over 50 countries. So or no longer it’s no longer that or no longer it’s true the U.S. supporting Ukraine, however the president has been very sure that we are going to stand with Ukraine for thus long because it takes.”
Singh was additionally requested to present a timeline on how long American taxpayers can build a matter to of to preserve contributing money to the Ukraine-Russia war, but she was unable to entire so.
“I’m no longer going to forecast how long that’s going to final. That undoubtedly would no longer stay the Ukrainians any accurate. That would genuinely income the Russians. And so I am true no longer going in an effort to present you a timeline on how long we’re going in an effort to bring together these programs proceed to head forward.”
Monday, Nov. 20, will be the 635th day since Russia first invaded Ukraine in Feb. 2022.
Fox News’ Liz Friden, Jessica Sonkin and The Related Press contributed to this memoir.