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Russia: New US aid for Ukraine will fail to change military situation in favor of Kiev

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov

Russia says the latest aid package by the United States for Ukraine will fail to change the military situation in favor of Kiev, as Washington gears up for a seminal weekend vote on a long-stalled major military aid package for the ex-Soviet republic.

At a press conference on Thursday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stressed that the $61 billion package of US funding for Ukraine would not change the dynamics on the battlefield.

“It won’t in any way influence the development of the situation on the front. All experts now assert that the situation on the front is very unfavorable for the Ukrainian side. Therefore it will not be able to change anything,” he said.

“Ukraine now has to fight not only for it (the aid package), benefiting the Americans, it has to fight to the last Ukrainian,” Peskov further said, adding that Ukraine is also burdened with debt, “a favorite colonial policy of the United States.”

His comments came as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has already warned that his country will lose its war with Russia if the US Congress withholds the major aid package, saying that the months-long delay has cost Ukraine lives and territory.

A day earlier, US House Speaker Mike Johnson said that he would advance the huge aid package, which has been stalled since last year amid political infighting in the Republican Party.

Ukraine is deeply dependent on Western funding, particularly from Washington, Kiev’s biggest supporter throughout the current conflict, to fight off the Russians, who have begun to chalk up some of their first territorial gains this year following months of stalemate on the frontlines.

“We need this money yesterday, not tomorrow, not today,” said Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmygal on Wednesday, echoing similar pleas for urgent support by other Ukrainian leaders.

US President Joe Biden has already said that he would sign the aid package into law “immediately” after it passed through Congress, which is plagued by differences over the complex plan.

Ukraine says hit Russian airfield in Crimea

On Thursday, Kiev claimed that Ukrainian forces had managed to strike a large Russian airfield on the Crimean peninsula, destroying a range of military equipment.

Crimea, formerly part of Ukraine, voted in a referendum in 2014 to fall under Russian sovereignty. The US and the European Union backed Kiev and refused to recognize the referendum results, later imposing sanctions on Moscow.

Ukraine’s military intelligence said that the attack occurred in the early hours of Wednesday at the Dzhankoi airbase, situated on the northern part of the peninsula, claiming that the operation was “successful” and that it damaged radars and air defense systems, among other targets.

“The number of enemy aviation objects destroyed or damaged and the number of casualties among personnel of the Russian occupation army is being clarified,” it added.

Russia commenced its “special military operation” in Ukraine on February 24, 2022.

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