By C. Todd Lopez
WASHINGTON (April 11, 2022) -- While Russia targets Ukraine's Donbas region for continued aggression and Ukrainians shift their efforts to confront that aggression, the U.S., allies and partners continue their efforts to get security assistance to the Ukrainian military.
"Regardless of the Russian refocus on the Donbas, we're not slowing down," Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby said during a briefing today at the Pentagon. That stuff continues to move, [and] it's going to continue to move. We said as much as we can, as fast as we can -- and we mean it."
Just last Wednesday, President Joe Biden authorized an additional $100 million in security assistance to support Ukraine. Included in that were additional Javelin anti-armor systems for Ukrainian forces. This most recent package was the sixth drawdown of equipment from DOD inventories for Ukraine since August 2021.
Along with the $300 million in military assistance announced in April, the total U.S. security assistance commitment to Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion has been more than $1.7 billion.
Kirby said equipment still flows to Ukraine to help that nation defend its sovereignty against an unprovoked Russian invasion that began Feb. 24.
"We are working very, very hard every single day to continue to get security assistance to the Ukrainians," Kirby told reporters, adding that anywhere from eight to 10 flights full of ammunition, hardware and other equipment are headed to Ukraine every day.
"[It's] not just from the United States, but from other nations, as well," Kirby said. "And that stuff isn't sitting around ... it gets to these transshipment sites. They're put onto trucks, and they're moved into Ukraine very, very quickly. In some cases, stuff coming from the United States takes no more than four to six days from the time the president authorizes drawdown authority [until] it gets into the hands of the Ukrainians. That's an incredible rate of speed, and we aren't slowing down."
Kirby told reporters that despite Russia's efforts to refocus their fight on the eastern part of Ukraine, in the area called the Donbas, nothing has changed about how the U.S. is getting much-needed supplies to the Ukrainians.
"The reprioritization of the Russians on the east hasn't had an effect on our ability to help coordinate the delivery of massive amounts of security assistance from the United States and other nations," he said. "That flow still continues."