Ukraine

Ukraine for the first time officially turned to the United States with a request to sell military equipment

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Ukraine for the first time officially turned to the United States with a request to sell military equipment

The head of the American diplomatic mission in Kiev said that Washington has begun to consider this request

For the first time, Ukraine has officially asked the United States to sell military equipment as the country continues to fight Russian-backed separatist groups in two eastern regions..

The U.S. Embassy in Kiev tweeted a statement from the U.S. Charge d’Affaires in Ukraine William Taylor, in which he announced Ukraine’s request.

“We are starting the process of considering this request.Ukraine for the first time officially turned to the United States with a request to sell military equipment The United States is firmly committed to supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and reforming its defense sector, ”Taylor said..

After Russia invaded Crimea in 2014 and supported the separatist conflict in eastern Ukraine, the United States provided nearly $ 1.5 billion in military aid to Kiev, including Javelin anti-tank missiles..

Russia has donated more than 450 tanks and 700 heavy equipment to armed groups, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine John Herbst said in a speech to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in June..

In an interview with Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty, Herbst suggested Kiev would order additional Javelin missiles as tanks remain a big problem for Ukrainian forces..

At the same time, he noted that Ukraine does not have billions that it could spend on American weapons..

The purchase request came against the backdrop of plans by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to make his first official visit to the United States.

The visit, which could take place in the coming weeks, will mark the first meeting between President Donald Trump and Zelenskiy, who won a crushing election victory in April..

While Trump has shown more interest in strengthening relations with Russia, he has also made boosting U.S. exports a key element of his economic policy..

Agreement on the sale of weapons to Ukraine may be the result of the first meeting of the leaders of the two countries.

However, Herbst said that one should not pay too much attention to the timing of the announcement of the request..

“As far as I understand, this issue has already been worked out for some time,” he said..

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