U.S. President, Joe Biden has signed legislative action to provide new $800m additional security aid and support to Ukraine following his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodimir Zelensky’s impassioned call for help and leadership delivered to Congress on Wednesday, March 16.
“The world is united in our support for Ukraine and our determination to make (Russian President Vladimir) Putin pay a very heavy price,” Biden said before signing a presidential memorandum at the White House to deliver the military assistance.
“America is leading this effort, together with our allies and partners, providing an enormous level of security and humanitarian assistance that we’re adding to today and we’re going to continue to do more in the days and weeks ahead.”
During Zelensky’s address to US members of Congress, he made more calls for more assistance as his homeland continues to battle Russian military’s invasion.
“You are the leader of your grand nation,” Zelensky told Biden. “I wish you to be the leader of the world. Being the leader of the world means to be the leader of peace.”
Biden, in his remarks on Wednesday, said
“I want to be honest with you. This could be a long and difficult battle. But the American people will be steadfast in our support of the people of Ukraine in the face of Putin’s immoral, unethical attacks on civilian population.”
According to the White House, the $800 million in security assistance will provide Ukraine with: 800 Stinger anti-aircraft systems, 100 drones, “over 20 million rounds of small arms ammunition and grenade launcher and mortar rounds,” 25,000 sets of body armor, 25,000 helmets, 100 grenade launchers, 5,000 rifles, 1,000 pistols, 400 machine guns, 400 shotguns, as well as “2,000 Javelin, 1,000 light anti-armor weapons, and 6,000 AT-4 anti-armor systems.”
The US will also provide Switchblade drones to Ukraine. The small, portable, so-called kamikaze drones carry warheads and detonate on impact