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US, NATO ramp up weapons deliveries to Ukraine contrary to escalating situation — diplomat

The situation in Ukraine continues to be a cause for concern, Maria Zakharova pointed out

MOSCOW, January 13. /TASS/. The growing weapons deliveries by the United States and NATO to Ukraine increase tension in the conflict area in the country’s southeast, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.

The Russian diplomat drew attention to the media reports that "contrary to the desire declared by the US authorities to make a contribution to settling the conflict peacefully, Washington approved the allocation of an additional $200 million of aid to Kiev in late December 2021 for the delivery of munitions, radio- and electronic warfare systems and lethal weapons to Ukraine."

"In addition to that, a group of Republicans submitted a bill to the lower house [of US Congress] on the guarantees of Ukraine’s independence through the efforts of strengthening its defense capability," the Russian diplomat went on to say.

"The bill stipulates allocating another $500 million to Kiev, of which $100 million should be spent on the purchase of air defense and anti-ballistic missile defense systems and combat ships. There are also plans to expand the range of armaments supplied to Ukraine and build up efforts to train the military personnel and reform the armed forces of Ukraine," the spokeswoman said.

"The situation in Ukraine continues to be a cause for concern," the Russian diplomat stressed.

"Despite the New Year holidays, the tense situation persists in southeastern Ukraine, the number of bombardments is growing again and the sufferings of Donbass civilians continue. However, this state of affairs does not embarrass the United States and NATO countries, which continue exploiting Ukrainian territory for military purposes, are providing military aid to Kiev, encouraging its hostile militaristic rhetoric and planning to hold a whole series of joint military drills this year several times larger than last year," the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said.