Joe Biden on Wednesday announced new military aid for Ukraine including anti-aircraft defenses, drones and other weaponry following an urgent plea from President Volodymyr Zalenskyy.
Biden announced $800 million in new assistance, which in combination with the $200 million authorized over the weekend, brings the total aid to $1 billion, The Hill reports.
The new aid will help provide 800 anti-aircraft systems to combat Russian planes; 9,000 anti-armor systems to help destroy Russian tanks and armored vehicles; 7,000 small arms including machine guns and shotguns; and 20 million rounds including artillery and mortar.
“I want to be honest with you: this could be a long and difficult battle,” Biden said.
“We are united in our abhorrence of Putin’s depraved onslaught, and we’re going to continue to have [Ukraine’s] back as they fight for their freedom, their democracy, their very survival,” he added. “And we’re going to give Ukraine the arms to fight and defend themselves through all the difficult days ahead.”
The announcement came hours after Zalenskyy delivered a plea to Congress asking for a no-fly zone over Ukraine and more assistance to decelerate Russian attacks on civilians and major cities.