Police at the scene after a rocket strike on a residential area in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Monday amid Russia's military invasion. At least one man was killed during the attack, the chairman of the Kharkiv Regional State Administration Oleg Sinegubov said. Photo by Vasiliy Zhlobsky/EPA-EFE
Aug. 8 (UPI) -- The United States announced Monday it would provide Ukraine with $1 billion in ammunition and weapons systems -- the largest lethal aid package provided to the country since Russia invaded in February.
Todd Breasseale, the acting Pentagon press secretary, said in a statement that the package put together by President Joe Biden under his presidential drawdown authority is needed to help Ukraine meet its "critical security and defense needs."
"It is the largest single drawdown of U.S. arms and equipment utilizing this authority," Breasseale said.
"This package provides a significant amount of additional ammunition, weapons, and equipment -- the types of which the Ukrainian people are using so effectively to defend their country."
Since August 2021, the U.S. government has now approved around $9.8 billion worth of military equipment and supplies for Ukraine through 18 such packages.
The latest package includes additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems and munitions for National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems.
It also includes 1,000 Javelin missiles and hundreds of AT4 anti-armor systems, 50 armored medical treatment vehicles and medical supplies, Claymore anti-personnel munitions and C-4 explosives.
Additional ammunition includes 75,000 rounds of 155mm artillery ammunition as well as 20 120mm mortar systems and 20,000 rounds of 120mm mortar ammunition.