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United States plans to increase military aid to Ukraine

November 24, 2014, 9:46 UTC+3 WASHINGTON WASHINGTON November, 24. /TASS
The US is delivering radars, mortars and other military equipment to Ukraine
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© AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu

WASHINGTON, November 24. /TASS/. Barack Obama’s administration plans to increase military assistance to Ukraine and hopes the Congress will allocate additional funds for the purpose from the budget for the 2015 fiscal year, US officials told journalists on Sunday after Vice-President Joe Biden’s visit to Morocco, Ukraine and Turkey.

On Friday, Biden was in Kiev where he met with President Petro Poroshenko and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

One of American journalists who participated in the briefing said Ukrainians are disappointed because the United States did not promise to supply offensive weapons, being aware that such a step would cause a tough reaction from Moscow. Administration officials did not say about offensive systems, though they confirmed other types of weapons would be supplied to Ukraine. Formally it is considered to be defense weaponry, but it can be used in any combat operations.

The United States will expand assistance to Ukraine in security, one of US officials said. First radars to detect the location of enemy mortars have been already delivered and some more will be delivered soon. Some military equipment and army vehicles from excess supplies in the Pentagon's inventory, including Humvee vehicles, will also be provided for the Ukrainian armed forces. The United States has already allocated $100 million and plans to spend tens of millions more to train Ukrainian soldiers. The planned financing is under consideration at the Congress, the official said.

The US officials said that aid for Ukraine should be provided by many countries and international organizations. The United States alone can not ensure a proper amount of aid and expect the IMF and Europe to participate, a presidential administration spokesman said.

His colleague added that such aid would be provided for Ukraine only after it forms a government and begins to carry out reforms.

Increasing military aid to Kiev was announced by Washington before Biden’s visit, and Moscow immediately paid attention to it, warning that if offensive weapons are supplied to Ukraine it would be violation of the April 17 Geneva agreements.

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