(AFP) US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin met on Monday (29) with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who is in Washington to press for continued funding for Ukraine’s fight against Russian troops.
Tens of billions of dollars in US aid have been sent to Ukraine since the Russian invasion almost two years ago. Nevertheless, many Republican lawmakers are reluctant to maintain support for Kiev, saying it lacks a clear end as the fight against President Vladimir Putin’s forces continues.
Stoltenberg and Austin, who led the campaign for international military support for Kiev, met at the Pentagon in the presence of General Charles “CQ” Brown, the top US military commander, and other officials.
President Joe Biden has asked Congress to approve a new 61 billion dollar aid package for Ukraine.
But talks have stalled because Republican lawmakers, furious at the record flow of migrants across the border with Mexico, are demanding major changes in immigration policy and border control in exchange for approving more money for Ukraine.
On Monday, Stoltenberg is also scheduled to meet with Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.
Tomorrow, the agenda includes talks with Republican and Democratic lawmakers involved in the debate on aid to Ukraine.