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Monday, July 22, 2024

White House sends message to Putin

The US will not let Russia “outlast” Kiev’s Western backers, Karine Jean-Pierre has said

The US and its allies will continue to support Kiev in its conflict with Moscow, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said at a press briefing on Monday. She promised more aid to Ukraine, after lawmakers decided not to include military assistance to Kiev in a short-term spending bill passed last week.

Jean-Pierre denied that support for Ukraine among Western nations is waning. “There is [a] strong, very strong international coalition behind Ukraine,” she told journalists. “And if [Russian President Vladimir] Putin thinks he can outlast us, he’s wrong. He’s wrong.”

Read more: Biden demands uninterrupted cash flow to Ukraine

The White House press secretary also announced “another package of aid for Ukraine soon,” but provided no details about either the timeline or the contents of the upcoming military assistance.

Her words came just two days after Congress passed a funding bill designed to allow the US government to function beyond September and avoid a shutdown, but it did not include any aid for Kiev. Jean-Pierre urged Congress to move quickly. “They don’t have to wait 45 days to get this done,” she said.

Some lawmakers, however, are concerned about how the money being sent to Ukraine is actually being used, and how the Biden administration envisions an end to the conflict.

“Our members have a lot of questions, especially on the accountability provisions of what we want to see with the money that gets sent,” House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told journalists on Monday. He also called on the White House to arrange a briefing for lawmakers to outline a way out of the conflict.

Also on Monday, the Pentagon warned that budget restrictions might affect both the US’ ability to provide aid to Kiev and to replenish its own weapons stocks. If the funding requests are not met, the US Defense Department would be forced to restrict its supplies to Ukraine, it added.

Read more: US slaps Ukraine with list of demands

In September, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky told US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that Kyiv might “lose the war” if it did not get aid in time.

Last Sunday, Ukrainian MP Aleksey Goncharenko warned that Kiev has no chance of holding out without Washington’s continued support, going so far as to suggest that Ukraine commit to joining US wars abroad to secure more military assistance.