The US Senate has increased military aid to Ukraine on 50 million dollars
June 27 The US Senate approved a draft defense appropriation law (NDAA) for the 2020 year. The project provides for 300 million dollars in defense assistance to Ukraine. This is 50 million dollars more than the amount that was provided for in the bill on defense allocations of the past fiscal year, according to the Embassy of Ukraine in the United States, writes Voice of America.
“The bill provides for allocating $ 100 million out of $ 300 million only for lethal weapons. It is proposed to expand the areas of US assistance to strengthen the defense capability of the Armed Forces of Ukraine by including coastal defense assets, anti-ship missiles, as well as systems that improve the efficiency of command and control, in particular, air and coastal defense, "the embassy said.
The bill also introduces a restriction on cooperation in the military sphere between the United States and Russia, until Russia releases the captured Ukrainian sailors. This was announced by the author of the corresponding amendment, Senator Rob Portman.
Speaking before the vote for the bill in the Senate, Rob Portman said that the expansion of defense assistance to Ukraine is a powerful signal of support and called for more powerful cooperation.
“We will continue to help Ukraine defend itself from illegal Russian aggression, I hope that we will also be able to promote the release of Ukrainian sailors who were illegally detained in the Kerch Strait,” the senator stressed.
“Our support for Ukraine's security extends to other forms as well,” Portman said in his speech. - I was the author of the amendment, which, I hope, will be included in the final version of the bill and which imposes pressure on Russia in order to release the Ukrainian sailors abducted in the Kerch Strait. The release of 24 sailors becomes a condition for any US military cooperation with Russia. "
“We must take a clear position against Russia's disregard for international law in this area,” he added.
As ForumDaily wrote earlier:
- On the morning of November 25, 2018, the Ukrainian small armored boats “Berdyansk” and “Nikopol”, as well as the tugboat “Yany Kapu” began the planned transition from Odessa to Mariupol. At the Kerch Strait, they were met by Russian border ships, one of which rammed a Ukrainian tug. As a result, the Russian frontier guards with shooting captured three Ukrainian ships in the Kerch Strait area and captured 24 Ukrainian military.
- As stated in the FSB, they illegally crossed the Russian border and did not respond to the requirement to stop. The Ukrainian Navy said they had warned the Russian side in advance about the transition, but the Russian border guards did not respond to the message of the Ukrainian ships.
- Ukrainian authorities have accused Russia of aggression. After this incident, on November 26, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine voted for imposition of martial law for 30 days in the 10 regions of the country and in the inland waters of the Azov-Kerch water area.
- November 29 US President Donald Trump canceled the meeting with the head of Russia Vladimir Putin, which was to be held in Argentina on the sidelines of the G20 summit. The reason for the cancellation was the situation with the Ukrainian ships captured in the Kerch Strait, explained Trump in his microblog Twitter.
- The release of the sailors was also demanded by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron. But so far all the efforts of international diplomats have not brought results.
- April 16 Ukraine 2019 appealed to the maritime tribunal with a request to take urgent action in relation to Russia, in order to free the Ukrainian sailors and ships seized in the Kerch Strait.
- International Tribunal for Maritime Law 25 May He has made a decisionin which he ordered Russia to immediately release two Ukrainian warships and an auxiliary vessel and 24 Ukrainian sailors captured near the Kerch Strait in November 2018.
- Russia had a month to implement this decision, it expired on June 25. Ukrainian sailors are still in Russian captivity, criminal proceedings have been initiated against them. It’s hard to say what awaits Russia for violating the tribunal’s decision, because, according to lawyer Ilya Novikov, “no one has yet decided to violate the order of the UN tribunal".
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