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Biden promises new Ukrainian aid and warns Russia about chemical weapons – Daily Local

CHRIS MEGERIAN, LORNE COOK, AAMER MADHANI

Brussels (AP) — President Joe Biden and his Western allies promised new sanctions and humanitarian aid Thursday in response to Vladimir Putin’s attack on Ukraine, but their offer was made by President Volodymyr Zelensky. It fell short of the stronger military aid sought live. -Video appearance.

Leaders created the next step on Thursday to counter Russia’s aggression a month ago, discussing what to do if Putin deploys chemical, biological and even nuclear weapons. They met at three emergency summits and made a round trip to Brussels for a series of meetings of NATO, a group of seven industrialized countries, and the 27 European Council.

Biden warned at a press conference in the evening after meeting with NATO and G7 leaders that a chemical attack by Russia would “cause a reaction in kind.”

Biden and NATO allies had previously emphasized that the United States and NATO would not deploy troops in Ukraine. It was not immediately clear whether the president intended to suggest that such an attack would lead to the United States or its allies deploying troops to help Ukraine.

“You are asking if NATO crosses, we will make that decision then,” Biden said.

Zelenskyy revealed to his Western allies that he needed much more than they are currently trying to give, while thanking them for their help.

“1 percent of all planes, 1 percent of all tanks,” Zelensky asked members of the NATO alliance. “We can’t just buy them. If you get them all, you’ll get 100% security just like you do.”

Biden, who attended all three summits, said further assistance was underway. However, Western leaders also suggested that they were careful not to cross the Ukrainian border and exacerbate the conflict.

“NATO chose to support Ukraine in this war instead of going to war with Russia,” said French President Emmanuel Macron. “Therefore, we decided to step up the work in progress to prevent escalations and organize them in case of escalations.”

Billions of dollars of military hardware are already available. U.S. officials who requested anonymity said Western nations were discussing the possibility of providing anti-ship weapons in fear of Russia launching an amphibious attack on the Black Sea coast.

Biden said his top priority at the meeting on Thursday was to ensure that the West stayed on the same page in responding to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

“The most important thing is to keep us united,” Biden said.

Separately, the White House has announced that the United States will welcome 100,000 Ukrainian refugees and provide an additional $ 1 billion in food, medicine, water and other supplies.

Finland announced Thursday that it would send more military equipment to Ukraine. This is the second shipment in about 3 weeks. Belgium has announced that it will add € 1 billion to its defense budget in response to Russia’s invasion.

At the same time, Washington has expanded sanctions on Russia, targeting parliamentarians and defense industry contractors. The United States will also work with other Western countries to ensure that gold reserves held by Russia’s central bank are subject to existing sanctions.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also warned China to come to the rescue of Moscow as Russia faces increasingly international isolation. He called on Beijing to “join the rest of the world, explicitly condemn the brutal war against Ukraine, and not support Russia.”

However, Stoltemberg also revealed to the West that “it is responsible for preventing this conflict from becoming a full-scale war in Europe.”

The possibility of Russia’s use of chemical and nuclear weapons was a tough topic in Brussels, but it may have been prepared by leaders.

Whitehouse officials said both the United States and NATO are working on emergency response plans if Russia deploys non-conventional weapons. NATO has a specially trained and equipped army ready to be deployed in the event of such an attack on the population, territory, or army of a member country.

Stoltenberg said NATO leaders agreed Thursday to send equipment to Ukraine to protect Ukraine from chemical weapons attacks.

“This could include detectors, protection, medical support, and training for decontamination and crisis management,” he said.

Before leaving for Europe on Wednesday, Biden said the possibility of a chemical attack was a “real threat.” In addition, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told CNN this week that Russia could consider using nuclear weapons if it felt there was a “threat that exists in our country.”

Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin warned Thursday that “Russia can do anything.”

“They don’t respect any rules,” Marin told reporters. “They do not respect the international law they are actually committed to.”

Russia’s aggression urged European countries to rethink their military spending, and Stoltenberg held a NATO summit stating that the alliance “must respond to the new security reality of Europe.”

We are united by condemning the Kremlin’s unprovoked aggression and supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. “

Western nations have been largely unified in the confrontation with Russia after the invasion of Ukraine, but it is widely accepted that unification will be tested as the cost of war chips in the world economy.

Strengthening troops along the eastern side of NATO will almost certainly put pressure on the national budget, at least for the next five to ten years, if Russia is effectively thwarted.

The energy crisis exacerbated by the war will be a particularly hot topic at the European Council Summit, where leaders in Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece want an urgently coordinated block-wide response. EU officials have said they will seek US support for plans to replenish their natural gas storage facilities for next winter, and hope that Brock will jointly purchase gas.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz dismissed the call to boycott Russia’s energy supply, saying it would cause serious damage to his country’s economy. Scholz said environmental activists are facing pressure to quickly pull Germany away from Russia’s energy, but the process must be phased.

“Doing so from one day to the next would mean putting our country and Europe into recession,” Schortz said Wednesday.

Ursula von der Leyen, executive director of the European Union, provided additional supply of liquefied natural gas from the United States for the block of 27 countries “during the next two winters” prior to Biden’s visit. He said he would like to discuss the possibility of securing.

The EU imports 90% of the natural gas used in the electricity, heating and supply industries, and Russia supplies almost 40% of EU gas and a quarter of its oil. Brock is looking for ways to reduce Russia’s dependence on gas by diversifying its suppliers.

Biden’s National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said the United States is looking for ways to “surge” LNG supply to Europe.

Poland and other eastern NATO countries also seek clarification on how the United States and other European countries can help address growing concerns about Russia’s aggression and the swirling refugee crisis. .. Over the last few weeks, more than 3.5 million refugees have fled Ukraine, of which more than 2 million have fled to Poland.

Biden will visit Poland on Friday, where energy and refugee issues are expected to be central to the talks with President Andrzej Duda.

Four new NATO battlegroups have been established in Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria, usually with an army of 1,000 to 1,500.

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Madani reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Matthew Lee, Hannah Fingerhat, Ellen Nickmeier, Darlene Superville in Washington, Dasha Litvinova in Lviv, Ukraine, and Samuel Petrekin in Brussels contributed to this report.

Biden promises new Ukrainian aid and warns Russia about chemical weapons – Daily Local

Source link Biden promises new Ukrainian aid and warns Russia about chemical weapons – Daily Local

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