(CNS News) – On Nov. 4, the Department of Defense (DoD) announced it was disbursing a $400 million aid package under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), raising the total value of assistance provided to $18.2 billion since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022.
Following President Joe Biden’s 24th drawdown of equipment on Oct. 28, the DoD announced in a Nov. 4 press release that it would be initiating “a contracting process to provide additional priority capabilities to Ukraine.”
According to the press release, the DoD has initiated the contracting process to provide Ukraine with the following capabilities:
-- “Funding to refurbish HAWK air defense missiles for inclusion in future Presidential Drawdown packages;
-- 45 Refurbished T-72B Tanks with advanced optics, communications, and armor packages;
-- 1,100 Phoenix Ghost Tactical Unmanned Aerial Systems;
-- 40 Armored Riverine Boats;
-- Funding to refurbish 250 M1117 Armored Security Vehicles;
-- Tactical secure communications systems and surveillance systems; and
-- Funding for training, maintenance, and sustainment.”
The T-72B tanks are part of “a trilateral, coordinated effort with the Netherlands and Czech Republic,” in which the Netherlands will be providing Ukraine with 45 T-72B tanks in cooperation with the Czech Ministry of Defense and Czech industry.
While Presidential Drawdown Authority (PDA) allows the president to send over DoD equipment to Ukraine, the USAI “is an authority under which the United States procures capabilities from industry.”
“This USAI package underscores the continued U.S. commitment to supporting Ukraine by meeting their most urgent needs, while also building the capacity of Ukraine’s Armed Forces to defend its sovereignty over the long term,” the press release reads.
“Through both PDA and USAI, DoD continues to work with Ukraine to meet both its immediate and longer-term security assistance needs,” states the release. These needs include “additional air defense capabilities,” which DoD says are “critical.”
“Together with our Allies and partners, our efforts will help Ukraine continue to be successful today while building the enduring strength of Ukraine’s forces to ensure the continued freedom and independence of the Ukrainian people,” said the DoD.
The United States has now committed over $18.9 billion to Ukraine since the start of the Biden administration, $18.2 billion of which has come after Russia invaded Ukraine.