EU Leaders Support A Plan To Arm Ukraine With Blocked Russian Assets

The leaders of the European Union have given their approval to a proposal that would use the windfall profits from blocked Russian financial assets to provide assistance to Ukraine. This assistance would include spending up to three billion dollars annually on weaponry and ammunition for the country.

Thursday was the day that the leaders reached a consensus to proceed with the proposal that was proposed by the European Commission. Concerns have been raised by a number of member nations that are not involved in military operations, including Austria, Ireland, and Malta. As a result, the European Union will need to devise methods to send help that consider these concerns. During a press conference held late on Thursday, Charles Michel, who chairs the council of EU leaders, stated that “we are determined to act very quickly.”

A prior plan for the European Union, which was drafted in late 2023 and agreed upon in principle just a month ago, was to use the interest payments and other revenues that were collecting in accounts in Brussels to assist in the reconstruction of Ukraine. This proposal goes further than that plan. After speaking with reporters on Tuesday, a senior official from the European Union stated that a “growing majority” of European countries were “pleading” for these profits to be utilized for the European Peace Facility. A facility was established in 2021 with the purpose of financing the European Union’s defense and military measures on a global scale. In contrast to the general budget of the EU, it can be used to purchase weapons.

In recent months, there has been an increase in the amount of pressure placed on EU members to boost their level of military assistance to Ukraine. This is due to the fact that the supply of aid from the United members has ceased, and Russia has made advancements on the battlefield. In the previous month, the United States Senate passed a supplementary bill that would have made it possible for Ukraine to receive sixty billion dollars in military assistance; however, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mike Johnson, refused to bring the bill to the floor for a vote.

The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, expressed her satisfaction to the reporters on Thursday by saying, “I am glad that (EU) leaders endorsed our proposal to use the extraordinary revenue from immobilized Russian assets.” She also praised the “strong support” among the leaders for the idea of utilizing the funds for weapons. On July 1, she predicted that the money would begin to flow. On the other hand, neutral EU member states like Ireland and Austria find it difficult to accept the shift in emphasis toward providing direct support to the military of Ukraine rather than using the cash to assist in the reconstruction of the country.

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