While Ukraine is asking for a significant increase in arms deliveries to help it repel Russian troops, a meeting with NATO countries and its allies took place in Brussels on Wednesday June 15.
The United States and its allies must ‘step up’ their engagement with Ukraine as the war comes at a ‘pivotal’ time, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told a meeting on Wednesday. defense ministers in Brussels.
The meeting, to which NATO partner countries have been invited, is being held on the sidelines of a meeting of Alliance Defense Ministers and is to focus on the delivery of arms to Ukraine. This is the third time that such a meeting, attended by nearly 50 countries, has been held to discuss aid to Ukraine, as Kyiv calls for a significant increase in arms deliveries for the help repel Russian troops in the east of the country.
“We can’t afford to slack off and we can’t run out of steam. The stakes are too high,” Lloyd Austin said at the start of the meeting in Brussels. “We must step up our joint commitment to Ukraine’s self-defense and ensure that Ukraine can defend itself, its citizens and its territory,” he added.
Before the meeting began, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the allies would continue to supply Ukraine with heavy weapons and long-range systems and that he expected they agree on a new aid package to the country at an Alliance summit scheduled for Madrid on June 28, 29 and 30.
“Russia tries to overwhelm Ukrainian positions”
The battle of Sievierodonetsk – a city of nearly 100,000 inhabitants before the war – is the epicenter of the fighting for control of Donbass, the main objective that Moscow set itself after giving up the capture of Kyiv in the first weeks of the war. invasion launched on February 24, which he describes as a “special military operation”.
“Ukraine is facing a pivotal moment on the battlefield. Russia is using its long-range fire to try to overwhelm Ukrainian positions,” the US Secretary of Defense said.
US officials expect announcements regarding additional arms deliveries to Ukraine to be made in the coming days. Washington has released about $4.6 billion (about 4.4 billion euros) in aid to Ukraine since the Russian invasion, including howitzers and longer-range weapons like the rocket system of High Mobility Artillery (HIMARS).
The Biden administration says it has received assurances from Kyiv that these weapons would not be used to attack Russian territory, which would escalate the conflict.
Biden announces $1 billion in US aid to Donbass
The United States will provide new security aid of one billion dollars to Ukraine to contribute to Kyiv’s efforts in the Donbass, a region in the east of the country that has become a priority target for Russia.
The announcement was made Wednesday by US President Joe Biden to his Ukrainian counterpart Volodimir Zelensky in a telephone interview, according to an account of that exchange reported by the White House.
The aid includes “additional coastal defense and artillery weapons, as well as artillery munitions and advanced rocket systems,” the White House chief said in a statement released by his office.