The United States unveiled a $1.1 billion (€1.03 billion) arms package for Ukraine’s battle with Russia that includes 18 high mobility artillery rocket launcher systems, accompanying munitions, various types of counter drone systems and radar systems, US officials said on Wednesday.
The Pentagon’s announcement kicks off a contracting process to procure the weapons which could be delivered in between six and 24 months, a senior defence officials told reporters on a conference call.
Funds from the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) appropriated by the US. Congress will be used to allow the Biden administration to procure weapons from industry rather than from existing US weapons stocks.
Among the package are some 150 vehicles, 40 trucks and 80 trailers to transport heavy equipment, two radars to track unmanned aerial systems, 20 multi-mission radars tactical secure communications and surveillance systems as well as body armor training maintenance and spares.
This announcement marks $16.2 billion worth of US security assistance since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24th earlier this year.
Meanwhile, an agreement on the next round of European sanctions package against Russia is expected before next week’s EU summit, or at least major parts of the package, an EU official told Reuters.
The official said they expected the summit to focus on the referendums in Ukraine, possible annexations of areas by Russia, Russia’s nuclear threats and the disruption to the Nord Stream pipelines.
EU leaders are also expected to discuss different ideas for energy price caps at the summit, which the EU official expects to be a tense one “as we are in difficult times”. – Reuters