News ID: 319579
Published: 0258 GMT January 22, 2022

West sending military aid to Ukraine despite Russia warning

West sending military aid to Ukraine despite Russia warning

Service members of the Ukrainian Armed Forces gather near BM-21 "Grad" multiple rocket launchers during tactical military exercises at a shooting range in the Kherson region, Ukraine, on January 19, 2022.

Despite warning by Russia, the US sent its first shipment of $200 million military support package for Ukraine amid tensions between Moscow and the West.

The delivery followed U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken's visit to Kiev this week amid concerns from Kiev and its Western allies over tens of thousands of Russian troops amassed at the border with Ukraine, Reuters reported.

Moscow has denied it is planning an invasion, with the Kremlin demanding NATO halt its eastward expansion in the region and deny membership to Ukraine.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has described NATO membership for Ukraine and the others as well as the alliance’s weapons deployments there as a red line for Moscow, warning that he would order unspecified “military-technical measures” if the demands aren’t met.

"The United States will continue providing such assistance to support Ukraine's Armed Forces in their ongoing effort to defend Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity against Russian aggression," it said on Facebook.

Blinken said on Saturday that the Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania will send U.S.-made anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine, AP reported.

He said in a tweet posted that Washington saluted the three NATO nations and former Soviet republics “for their longstanding support to Ukraine”.

Dmitry Peskov, spokesperson for Russian President Vladimir Putin, earlier this week described western arms supplies to Ukraine as extremely dangerous and said they “do nothing to reduce tensions”.

A meeting Friday between Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov ended with no breakthrough.

In a separate development, German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht said in an interview published on Saturday that Berlin is ruling out arms deliveries to Ukraine for now.

He made the remarks a few days after Britain started supplying Kiev with anti-tank weapons, according to Reuters.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, however, has stressed Berlin's policy of not supplying lethal weapons to conflict zones.









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