(MENAFN) In a candid revelation, United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen emphasized the profound dependency of Ukraine on American assistance for the sustenance of both its military capabilities and civil society. Speaking with CNBC on Monday, Yellen underscored that military aid to Ukraine stands as a "critical priority" for the United States, framing it within the broader context of national security concerns.
Yellen went on to express the potential ramifications of a failure to support Ukraine adequately, suggesting that if Russian President Vladimir Putin were to triumph in the ongoing conflict, the risk of subsequent aggression in a NATO ally could escalate. "We can't allow Ukraine to lose a battle on the home front because it lacks enough money to keep schoolteachers in the classroom and first responders on the job when it's fighting valiantly on the battlefield, so Ukraine is utterly dependent on this aid," she asserted during the interview.
Highlighting international contributions, Yellen referenced the European Union's recently announced EUR50 billion (USD55 billion) aid package slated for disbursement to Ukraine over the next four years. Additionally, she pointed to a USD15.6 billion fund provided by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as examples of the collaborative effort required to address Ukraine's pressing needs.
Despite the urgency conveyed by Yellen, the Biden administration faced a setback in its attempt to secure a USD105 billion spending package, with USD61.4 billion earmarked for Kiev, as Congress entered a two-week recess this month. The proposed bill encompassed financial allocations for various geopolitical concerns, including USD14.3 billion for Israel's activities in Gaza and USD13.6 billion for domestic border security. In response to opposition demands, President Joe Biden opted for a stopgap spending bill, signed on Thursday, to sustain federal government operations into 2024.
As Ukraine grapples with the challenges of an ongoing conflict, Yellen's remarks shed light on the intricate interplay between geopolitical strategy, financial allocations, and the imperative to uphold international security commitments in the face of legislative complexities.
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