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Biden promises Zelenseky to strengthen Ukraine’s air defense

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
US President Joe Biden speaks on the phone in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, DC, United States. (File photo)

US President Joe Biden has promised his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky to strengthen the country’s air defense as the war with Russia drags on.

In a telephone conversation with Zelensky on Sunday, Biden reaffirmed that his administration “is prioritizing efforts to strengthen Ukraine’s air defense through our security assistance,” the White House’ said in a statement.

Biden highlighted the latest $275 million in weapons, ammunition and other equipment the Pentagon has announced for Ukraine.  

The US president also drew attention to the $53 billion investment to support Ukraine’s energy system during the winter.

He once again accused Russia of “war crimes and atrocities” and threatened to impose “costs on Russia for its aggression,” according to the statement.

President Zelensky said in a post on his Telegram account that he thanked Biden for his “unprecedented” support.

“I had a phone call with US President Joseph Biden and thanked for the unprecedented defense and financial assistance that the US provides to Ukraine,” Zelensky said.

“This not only helps succeed on the battlefield, but also maintains the stability of the Ukrainian economy,” he added.

Back in October, Biden reportedly lost his temper on a call with Zelensky, when the US president said Washington would send $1 billion in aid and the Ukrainian president responded with additional requests.

Biden reportedly told Zelensky he could be more grateful for US support, according to NBC News,.

Earlier this month, the Politico magazine said in a report that the US military may run out of money for the Ukraine conflict as Republicans are planning to cut Pentagon appropriations for Ukraine.

Washington has sent nearly $20 billion to aid Ukraine since the start of the war in February. when Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a “special military operation” in the ex-Soviet state. The Russian president said the campaign was to “de-Nazify” Ukraine.

Ever since, the Unite States, Britain and their Western allies have supplied Kiev with military aid, despite warnings from Russia that the weapons deliveries would only prolong the war.

Moscow has also complained that the weapons are being used to strike residential areas of the Russian-held Donbass region.

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