US aid to Ukraine: A senator blocks the machine

US aid to Ukraine: A senator blocks the machine
US aid to Ukraine: A senator blocks the machine

A lone senator blocked Thursday, May 12 the rapid vote on a US aid project for Ukraine amounting to 40 billion dollars. During a procedure requiring unanimity, Republican Senator R. Paul opposed the adoption of the bill despite pressure from other senators, reported Reuters. Republicans and Democrats had nevertheless united during the first reading in the Senate of this aid already adopted by the House of Representatives on May 10 by 368 votes against 57. Chuck Schumer, leader of the senatorial majority, but also Mitch McConnell, his counterpart Republican, sought to speed up the procedure for adopting the text.
R. Paul had in fact asked for the adoption of an amendment providing for the supervision of aid allocated to Ukraine by an inspector general, despite the urging of C. Schumer: “If Senator Paul persists with his rash demands…all he will accomplish is single-handedly delay Ukraine’s desperately needed aid.” Mr. McConnell also gave voice by stating that “Ukraine is not asking us to wage this war. They are only asking for the resources they need to defend against this invasion. And they need that help now.”
“This is the second spending bill for Ukraine in two months. And this bill is three times bigger than the first one,” defended R. Paul before formally blocking the aid package. “Congress just wants to keep spending, and spending,” he castigated.

A second vote should therefore take place on May 16 at the end of the afternoon and the adoption could take place in the middle of the week in the best of cases. Joe Biden himself had asked Congress to quickly approve this additional aid for Ukraine, at the base of 33 billion dollars before it was raised to 40 billion by the parliamentarians themselves.

The United States has already supplied more than $3 billion in weapons to kyiv since the start of the Russian offensive in late February. On May 6, the US President announced the release of aid of 150 million dollars, consisting mainly of weapons, radars and artillery ammunition. On the European side, France is sending anti-tank weapons to Ukraine, while Germany has decided to provide “Gepard».

The European Union has also supplemented its arsenal of sanctions with an embargo on Russian petroleum products, despite the reluctance of Berlin and Budapest. Russia, for its part, has repeatedly asked Western countries to put an end to arms deliveries to Ukraine. The Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs had thus urged on April 29 NATO to stop delivering weapons to kyiv, if the countries that make up the Alliance “are really interested in resolving the Ukrainian crisis”. “A continuous flow of weapons of all kinds has entered Ukraine through Poland and other NATO countries”, Sergei Lavrov then lamented. A few days earlier, the diplomat had already denounced the attitude “dangerousof the West during a long interview with the chain Pervy Canal.

In the aftermath of French President Emmanuel Macron’s re-election, Vladimir Putin spoke to his counterpart by phone about the conflict. According to a statement released by the Kremlin, “it was noted that the West could help stop these atrocities by exerting the necessary influence on the authorities in Kyiv as well as by stopping its arms shipments to Ukraine”.

The article is in French

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