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Biden signs record defense bill with Ukraine aid

President Joe Biden signed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024, which provides nearly a trillion dollars for the US military and allocates funds for Ukraine.
Joe Biden. Photo via Liga.net

US President Joe Biden signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024 with a record-high defense spending, according to a statement from the White House.

The act envisions $300 million in military aid for Ukraine in 2024-2025, out of a $886 billion record US defense budget, and was adopted while a $61 billion Ukraine aid package is stalled in Congress amid Republican gridlock.

In a statement, Joe Biden welcomed the law’s passage, the largest US military spending increase in decades, which includes military assistance to Ukraine. The National Defense Authorization Act extends the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), authorizing $300 million for fiscal years 2024 and 2025.

“The Act provides the critical authorities we need to build the military required to deter future conflicts while supporting service members and their spouses and families who carry out that mission every day,” President Biden noted.

At the same time, Joe Biden expressed several reservations about several provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act that he believes limit the ability of the US President to represent the country internationally and could lead to the disclosure of sensitive information.

US Congress finally approved the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024 on 14 December. The final version of the document does not contain restrictions on the Pentagon’s abortion policy and a ban on the Pentagon funding treatment for employees and military personnel related to gender dysphoria.

The US Congress is set to vote on a multibillion aid for Ukraine at the beginning of the next year. The Biden administration’s proposal, seeking approval for a $110.5 billion allocation to support Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, includes $61 billion for Ukraine. Republicans insist on addressing issues related to strengthening the border with Mexico, the source of illegal migration into the US. However, Democrats are reluctant to include these measures, creating a point of contention.

Under pressure from the House, Republicans have refused several times to include military aid for Ukraine in stopgap spending bills. 

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