In the midst of a funding setback for Ukraine’s military efforts due to opposition from hardline Republicans, President Joe Biden reached out to Western allies on Tuesday, affirming the United States’ unwavering support for Ukraine. Biden engaged in conversations with leaders from the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan, Poland, and Romania, as well as representatives from the European Union and NATO, alongside France’s Foreign Minister.
The urgency stemmed from an agreement reached in Congress on Saturday, which averted a government funding shutdown but omitted any new aid for war-torn Ukraine. To quell concerns among allies, Biden emphasized the necessity of sustained assistance for Ukraine, given the ongoing conflict with Russian forces.
Despite the disruption in funding caused by extreme right-wing Republicans, Biden urged House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and the majority in the House of Representatives to fulfill their commitment, asserting that US support for Kyiv must not be interrupted “under any circumstances.” The President further warned that existing funds would only last “a couple of months” without additional approval from the staunch Republican faction.
While the Pentagon assured that current military needs for Ukraine could be met for a brief period, a prolonged disruption in funding could jeopardize essential support. The situation in Washington grew tense as Republicans, particularly driven by their staunch stance against aid to Ukraine, challenged the political landscape.
Biden’s administration plans to announce new aid for the Ukrainian armed forces, drawn from an approved $113 billion budget, aiming to counterbalance the internal political upheaval. The current unrest in the US Congress, marked by the potential removal of McCarthy from his position as Speaker of the House, intensifies the challenges in securing the much-needed $6 billion aid package that Biden had been advocating for.
Against this backdrop of internal political discord, Biden’s call to allies signifies a collective effort to navigate the turbulent waters and uphold support for Ukraine amidst its ongoing struggle against Russian forces, emphasizing the critical importance of international solidarity during these precarious times.