US announces new $457 million package for Ukraine ‘law enforcement’

 US announces new $457 million package for Ukraine ‘law enforcement’

The US has committed more than $645 million to Ukrainian law enforcement since mid-December, as per US State Department.

    US-supplied High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS)

The US announced another $457.5 million “in funding for Ukrainian law enforcement,” not to mention billions for immediate military supplies to Ukrainian nationals.

“Our provision of personal protective equipment, medical supplies, and armored vehicles has significantly reduced casualties for Ukrainian civilians and their defenders,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

“The United States stands side-by-side with the Ukrainian people and remains committed to supporting a democratic, independent, and sovereign Ukraine,” he added.

According to the State Department, the US has committed more than $645 million to Ukrainian law enforcement since mid-December.

Since the start of the war, the US has given Ukraine $15.8 billion for “security assistance”, which includes a package worth $600 million in early September. Additionally, the White House asked Congress for $13.7 billion for “security and economic assistance” for Ukraine.

The United States has not only been giving money and arms to Ukraine, as a senior official in the US Department of Defense said earlier this month that his country was closely engaged with the armed forces of Ukraine ahead of their Kharkov counteroffensive, providing Kiev’s military with intelligence in the build-up to the operation.

The official then went on to underline how his country would continue providing training for Ukraine’s military on modern weapon systems supplied to the country by the West as the war unfolds.

“The United States has already been for a couple of months now training Ukrainian forces on how to operate some of the newer, more modern capabilities that we have been supplying to Ukraine,” the official said.

Despite Washington providing information to Kiev about Russian command posts, ammunition depots, and other potential targets, Ukrainian officials had been hesitant to disclose operational plans to their US counterparts earlier in the conflict, fearing that doing so “could highlight weaknesses and discourage continued American support ,” US officials told the New York Times.

However, it all changed this summer, when Kiev concluded that discussing preparations for its counteroffensive would, contrary to past fears, compel Washington to supply Ukraine with even more weapons, according to what unidentified senior US officials told the NYT.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said a few weeks back that Ukraine has been awaiting another millions-of-dollars-worth shipment of rounds for US-supplied High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS).

After a meeting at the US air base in Ramstein, Germany, Reznikov said, “The Ukrainian delegation has wrapped up a very eventful and fruitful visit to the Fifth Ukraine Defense Contact Group … An additional $675 million aid package was announced at the meeting. It you include crucial HIMARS ammo.”

HIMARS is capable of launching Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) missiles with a range of up to 50 miles as well as a single Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) missile with a range of 186 miles. The US has been continuously supplying Ukraine with GMLRSs, while Kiev continues to make demands for ATACMS delivery.

In addition to burdening the US with requests for aid, Ukraine is selling weapons it acquired from its allies on the black market due to the Kiev forces’ limited ability to use them because of their lack of training, logistical challenges, and the diminishing size of the Ukrainian armed force, according to former senior Pentagon adviser Karen Kwiatkowski.

Read next: Ukraine sells weapons on the black market due to limited ability to use

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu previously said the arms supplied by the West to Ukraine were ending up on the black market and spreading across West Asia.

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