Amid persistent tensions between Russia and Ukraine, the Pentagon announced military aid of $ 125 million to Kiev, including two patrol vessels.
The Pentagon announced military aid of $ 125 million to Ukraine, including two Mark IV patrol boats intended for the defense of the country’s territorial waters, the American press reported on March 1. US Defense spokesman John Kirby clarified, however, that the aid did not include Javelin anti-tank missiles.
Washington further said that the remaining $ 150 million in aid approved by the US Congress in the 2021 budget will be conditional on “progress” in “major defense reforms.”
“The Department [de la Défense] encourages Ukraine to continue enacting reforms that strengthen civilian control of the military, promote greater transparency and accountability in the defense industry and procurement, and modernize its defense sector in other areas keys in accordance with NATO principles and standards, ”the Pentagon said in a statement.
This military aid comes in a context of persistent tensions between Ukraine and Russia, in particular on the question of Donbass. In January, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov criticized Kiev for not respecting the Minsk agreements and dragging its feet on the issue of prisoner exchanges.
More recently, the censorship of media deemed to be pro-Russian in Ukraine and the accusations of “treason” for the benefit of Russia brought by the Ukrainian security services against the exiled Ukrainian Youtuber Anatoly Chary have not improved the appalling relations maintained between them. two states.
Another recent decision by Kiev reflecting its aversion to Moscow is the ban by the Ukrainian executive on the approval of vaccines “developed or produced in the aggressor country”, namely Russia. Ukraine will therefore not be able to acquire Russian Sputnik V vaccines, which are judged to be 91.6% effective against symptomatic forms of covid-19, to protect its population during a pandemic. The country is now relying on aid from the European Union and the UN Covax program or on Chinese and British vaccines to obtain supplies.