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Lethal military aid to Ukraine included in next year’s US defense budget — congressman

June 23, 4:18 UTC+3 WASHINGTON

In the past years, the US Congress has been allocating funds for supplying defensive weapons to the Kiev government

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WASHINGTON, June 23. /TASS/. A bill on the Department of Defense’s 2018 budget will include a provision about military assistance to Ukraine, including the lethal one, a senior US congressman said on Thursday.

"It certainly does continue to include military assistance to Ukraine and encouragement that the administration provide lethal assistance, so Ukrainians can defend themselves against the aggression, that is coming at them from the East," Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee Mac Thornberry said in his answer to a question from TASS.

In the past years, the US Congress has been allocating funds for supplying defensive weapons to the Kiev government. The move, however, does not mean automatically that the Pentagon must use these funds.

The Department of Defense has repeatedly stated that its military assistance to Ukraine was solely non-lethal.

Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko claimed after a recent meeting with US President Donald Trump that Kiev and Washington were about to sign an agreement on the delivery of lethal assistance to Ukraine.

Thornberry stopped short of confirming the information, saying he was not informed about matters discussed by the presidents in the White House.

"I don't know, what they've talked about, when president Poroshenko was in the White House," Thornberry said.

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