U.S. Senate Gives Final Congressional Approval To $40 Billion Aid Package For Ukraine

The U.S. Senate has overwhelmingly approved a $40 billion package of military and economic aid for Ukraine.

The 86-11 vote gave final congressional approval to the package, which is expected to be quickly signed by President Joe Biden, who proposed the spending package just a few weeks ago.

“Help is on the way, really significant help. Help that could make sure that the Ukrainians are victorious,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (Democrat-New York).

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Republican-Kentucky) backed the measure, saying Ukraine’s defeat would jeopardize America’s European trading partners, increase U.S. security costs there, and embolden autocrats in China and elsewhere to grab territory in their regions.

“The most expensive and painful thing America could possibly do in the long run would be to stop investing in sovereignty, stability, and deterrence before it’s too late,” McConnell said.

The House of Representatives approved the Ukraine bill 368-57 last week.

When Biden signs the bill into law, it will bring the total amount of U.S. aid approved for Ukraine to well over $50 billion since the Russian invasion began on February 24.

Schumer said on May 18 that he was not confident it would be the final measure to help Ukraine.

“They’re doing the fighting. They’re the ones getting killed. They’re the ones struggling and suffering. The least we can do is give them the weaponry they need,” he said.

The legislation contains around $24 billion for weapons, equipment, and military financing for Ukraine and to cover the cost of restoring U.S. weapons stocks sent to the region.

The rest includes economic aid to keep Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s government functioning, food programs for countries that rely on Ukraine’s crop production, refugee assistance, and funds for Kyiv to investigate Russian war crimes.

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Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

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