Austin and Umerov met behind closed doors at the Pentagon: what is known
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin held bilateral talks with Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov. The meeting was held behind closed doors, but beforehand, Austin publicly stated that the United States would continue to support Ukraine in its fight against Russian aggression.
The Pentagon chief also expressed hope that other allies and partners would support Ukraine in the long term. This was reported by the press service of the US Department of Defense.
Austin said that during his visit to Kyiv in November, he discussed with the country's leadership the immediate and medium-term goals and objectives in the war against Russia.
"As I said in Kyiv, the United States supports Ukraine in its fight against the Kremlin's aggression and brutality. Ukraine has regained more than half of the territory seized by Russia since its unprovoked invasion began in February 2022. So we will stand by Ukraine in the long term. I am confident that our allies and partners will be there as well," Austin said.
The bilateral meeting between Austin and Umerov at the Pentagon built on conversations held last month in Kyiv and included Ukraine's strategic goals for the coming year and a long-term vision for the war effort. Also during the meeting, the Pentagon chief announced another military aid package for Ukraine, which includes ammunition, artillery and tank weapons, as well as small arms ammunition.
"We discussed ways to strengthen the partnership between Ukraine and the U.S. defense industry. This only underscores America's commitment to a free and sovereign Ukraine that can defend itself today and deter further Russian aggression in the future," Austin said.
As a reminder, the United States has invested tens of billions of dollars in its defense industry to produce the most important types of weapons for the Armed Forces. This will strengthen the potential of the Ukrainian army now and will also allow it to deter the Russian aggressor in the future.
Earlier, Politico stated that American companies cannot produce weapons fast enough to meet global demand. Currently, the United States does not have the appropriate capacity and capabilities, in particular because of the wars in Ukraine and Israel.
As reported by OBOZ.UA, US President Joe Biden called on congressmen to support additional funding for Ukraine before the Christmas holidays. He shamed the opponents of aid to Kyiv, emphasizing that if Putin wins in Ukraine, NATO countries could be his next targets.