US Aid to Ukraine on Verge of Expiring, White House Warns

The White House warned Monday that the United States has only enough authorized funding for one more aid package to Ukraine this year before Congress would be required to greenlight new contributions to Kyiv.

Washington has committed more than $43 billion in military assistance to ally Ukraine since Moscow launched its deadly full-scale invasion of its neighbor in February 2022.

But hardline US Republicans in Congress, who complain that the Biden administration is prioritizing contributions to Kyiv over addressing domestic problems like border security, have all but blocked new funding.

“We have… one more aid package here before our replenishment authority dries up,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters, referring to the congressionally approved system by which the Pentagon replaces its donated weapons and equipment.

Lawmakers recently approved a 2024 defense budget that allows release of $300 million for Kyiv. But that is just half a percent of the $61 billion sought by the White House, a package for arming Ukraine that is still being debated.

Kirby said the Defense Department’s comptroller, Michael McCord, wrote lawmakers on Monday saying the administration has “allocated the remaining funding that’s available to restock US supplies and to replace what we’re sending to Ukraine.”

A final package for 2023 is still expected later this month, although Kirby declined to put a dollar amount on it.

“When that one’s done… we will have no more replenishment authority available to us,” Kirby said. “And we’re going to need Congress to act without delay.”

The Biden administration has used such congressionally approved replenishment authority in previous Ukraine supplemental.

“As Mr. McCord wrote, doing so is in our clear national interest, and our assistance is vitally needed so Ukraine can continue its fight for freedom,” Kirby said.

Republican lawmakers are negotiating with Democrats and the White House over a possible deal that would toughen policies along the US border with Mexico as a way to stem immigration, in exchange for a sign-off on more aid to Ukraine and Israel.

President Joe Biden “is willing to negotiate in good faith and he is willing to make compromises,” Kirby said.

“We’re in good-faith negotiations with members of Congress about border security, and of course funding for Ukraine and for Israel as a part of that.”

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