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Israel, Ukraine granted billions as Joe Biden signs US military aid bill

Courtesy: Geo News/Reuters

  • Package passed by US Senate on Tuesday.
  • Cumulatively amount of aid is $95 billion.
  • $26 billion provided for Israel’s brutal war.

Ukraine and Israel were granted massive financial relief after months of heated negotiation in Congress amid their respective wars as US President Joe Biden signed four bills that also included a military assistance package to Kyiv and Tel Aviv Wednesday.

The package was passed Tuesday by the US Senate and is cumulatively estimated at $95 billion with $61 billion for Ukraine, $26 billion for Israel, and $8 billion for the Indo-Pacific.

“It gives vital support to America ‘s partners so they can defend themselves from threats to their sovereignty,” President Biden said, adding that the “flow of weapons to Ukraine would commence in the next few hours”.

“They’re a fighting force with the will and the skill to win,” the commander-in-chief said referring to Ukraine and criticised Donald Trump’s supporting legislators who tried to block the aid.

Ukrainian servicemen fire a BM-21 Grad multiple launch rocket system towards Russian troops near a front line in Donetsk region, Ukraine April 24, 2024. — Reuters

The bills — which were signed by the President into law — also included the banning of the social media platform TikTok.

After the law, the Byte-Dance-owned video-sharing application would be getting a nine-month window to sell its stakes in the US or face a complete ban.

The aid package for Ukraine did not come easy as President Volodymyr Zelensky rigorously lobbied causing a split in the House of Representatives, jeopardising the position of House Speaker Mike Johnson.

Johnson met with Donald Trump in Florida earlier in April where the former president said Johnson was “doing a really good job.”

The Capitol building is pictured in Washington on April 23, 2024. — Reuters

Several members of the House did not back the aid package to Ukraine and the way Johnson led the discussions on the matter.

Legislators in Congress believe that it is an unwinnable war that started in February 2022 by the special military operation of Russia.

The 81-year-old President also continued to mend fences in the House and moved forward enabling high US government officials to explain the stakes and the fate of democracy in Europe and in the world.

The vote regarding the package in the Senate was 79-18, in which 15 Republicans and three Democrats voted against the bill.

Senator Bernie Sanders, who was against the bill wrote on X, former Twitter: “Enough is enough. No more money for [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s war machine.”

The differences were set aside in the Republican-dominated House of Representatives changed course and approved the bills Saturday.

“Congress has passed my legislation to strengthen our national security and send a message to the world about the power of American leadership: We stand resolutely for democracy and freedom, and against tyranny and oppression,” Biden said after the Senate vote.

1- Header image: US President Joe Biden makes remarks after signing the $95 billion National Security Package in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Wednesday, April 24, 2024. — Reuters

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