EU Comes to Agreement on Ukraine Aid

EU Comes to Agreement on Ukraine Aid

( – Ever since Russia invaded neighboring Ukraine in February 2022, the latter has relied mainly on the West to supply it with the military and humanitarian aid it needs to fight off its aggressor. The United States is currently battling internally over whether to send more aid to the Eastern European country, but the European Union (EU) has apparently reached an agreement on a significant package.

On Thursday, February 1, the EU finally cleared its last hurdle to provide Ukraine with a $54 billion package. The hold-up during the process was Hungary’s reluctance to agree to send money and equipment. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, a known ally to Russian President Vladimir Putin, had tied the EU’s hands on the matter since last year, citing budget concerns, among others. He accused the union of blackmail after it suspended billions of Euros on suspicion of democratic backsliding.

However, Orbán finally relented, though it’s unclear what brought him on board. Now, Ukraine will benefit from the 27-member bloc’s approval of an aid package. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy took to X, formerly Twitter, to thank European leaders for “advocat[ing] for continued European unity and strength.”

The agreement spreads the 50 billion Euro package over four years and stipulates that it could come under review in 2026 to determine whether the aid is still necessary. Yet, Zelenskyy’s country is still hoping that US aid will also come through, as the nation hopes to cover the existing 2024 budget shortfall and maintain its stock of weaponry and artillery.

The combined aid packages have helped Ukraine stave off Russia’s aggressions, providing the nation and its troops with top-of-the-line military equipment, minimizing Moscow’s gains. However, there are concerns that Russia’s expansion of its defense industry and its increased spending on the war could lead to more serious conflict, perhaps involving NATO members, in the future.

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