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US Senate Stalls on Ukraine Aid Package, Sparking Concerns of Abandonment Amidst Russian Aggression

The US Senate will not approve a major new foreign aid package this year, including around $60 billion for Ukraine, after failing to reach a deal on domestic border security, leading lawmakers have announced.

The Republican party has declared that they will not agree to the White House's proposal to allocate billions of dollars to foreign countries unless the Democratic party introduces substantial changes to the country's immigration policies.

Majority Leader Chuck Schumer had postponed the Senate's Christmas break by a week in the hopes of hammering out an agreement. In a joint statement with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday, the two top senators expressed hope that a deal could be reached "early in the new year."

According to the statement, senators and President Joe Biden's administration will dedicate the rest of the year to making a concerted effort to reach a final agreement.

The House of Representatives, controlled by Republicans, decided not to reduce their break to allow for additional negotiations, unlike the Senate. Speaker Mike Johnson has urged the White House to provide a detailed plan explaining how investing more funds in Ukraine would aid in its victory against Russia.

Ukraine faces 'very difficult' winter-- Washington

 

Biden has condemned Republicans for endangering US national security by delaying the passage of foreign aid, essentially taking it hostage. John Kirby, a spokesperson for the National Security Council, emphasized during a briefing on Tuesday that the White House lacks an alternative source of funding, and that the current aid allocated for Ukraine is on the verge of depletion.

During a year-end press conference, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky discussed the matter, stating that he has faith in the United States' commitment to Ukraine and does not believe it will abandon its support.

"The US agreement is in place, and we will ensure its complete and timely execution," he emphasized.

Russian President Vladimir Putin accused Washington of initiating the Ukraine conflict with the 2014 armed coup in Kiev and using it for selfish gains as he attended a Defense Ministry meeting on Tuesday.

According to Putin, the US government was concerned about the strengthening of ties beteen Russia and Europe, and subsequently, they managed to create a division between the two regions, further burdening Europe financially.

According to US media, officials negotiating the border deal have agreed in principle to raise the threshold for migrants seeking to claim asylum in the US and to give the government more authority to expedite expulsions. The parties have conflicting positions on which groups of migrants should be kept in custody and which should be paroled.

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